Time Out of Mind

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Time Out of Mind: A Candid Portrayal of Life on the Streets

The movie Time Out of Mind came to Seattle sometime last year. Written and directed by Oren Moverman and starring Richard Gere, this movie paints a genuine picture of life as a homeless person.

Homeless people don't get breakfast in bed.


Peaceful Mornings: Denied

The opening scene shows a building manager (Steve Buscemi) walking into an apparently abandoned apartment and finding George (Richard Gere) asleep in the bathtub. This scene is all too realistic of how homeless men and women are treated on a daily basis.
What do you do when wake up in the morning? Do you lay there for a moment and let your eyes focus on the wall? Do you enjoy a cup of coffee and read the paper? Do you psych yourself up for the day ahead? All these are perfectly human things to desire in the morning.
Not George.
George was completely disregarded in his morning interaction with the building manager and wasn’t even given the human decency of waking up and taking in his confusing circumstance. He was cursed at, interrupted, ignored, and forced out onto the cold street.
This is how homeless people live.

Sleep: Denied

Have you ever had a sleepless night while your neighbors partied until 2 in the morning?
Frustrating, right?
Try sleeping on a city bench, like George, with cars, sirens, and lots of people walking by. And, what did you do with your personal items while you slept? Are they still there in the morning?
Or, better yet, try sleeping in a huge room with 99 other men snoring, coughing, and talking in their sleep right next to you.
Not all homeless people are on drugs, some of them are just seriously sleep deprived.
This is how homeless people live.

Privacy: Denied

Does your waitress require a full life story before serving your breakfast?
Didn’t think so.
When was the last time your hotel desk clerk asked if you have family you could stay with instead?
Um, never?
Yet, this is a daily experience for many homeless people. In the movie, George is very realistically slammed with his history in all its painful glory while seeking a place to stay and a decent meal.
Although it’s meant as a safety precaution as well as a way to offer services, many homeless people are bombarded with questions about their past, family, and experiences just moments after meeting a stranger at a service desk. Sadly, many service providers ask those same questions so many times throughout the day, they tend to ask in a bored, uninterested, and certainly unsympathetic tone.
Would you feel respected in this situation?
This is how homeless people live.

Richard-Gere-Time out of mindRelationships: Denied

Do you ever feel invisible?
The most subtle, yet poignant depiction of homelessness in Time Out Of Mind is that of everyone else living their lives completely oblivious to the homeless people around them.
Can you believe that in the making of this movie, Richard Gere –once rated Sexiest Man Alive by People Magazine– stood on one of the busiest streets of New York for hours and no one recognized him?
You might feel overlooked at times.
Homeless people feel invisible. They don’t get to chat with someone on the street because no one on the street will look at them.
This is how homeless people live.

How might you, as an individual, change their experience?

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