I Am Maris: Portrait of a Young Yogi

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Sequoia 2 Sat, Oct 13, 2018 11:30 AM
Century Larkspur Sun, Oct 14, 2018 11:30 AM
Film Info
Category:Mind the Gap
Section:Valley of the Docs
Running Time:54 min.
Director:Laura VanZee Taylor
Producer:Ariana Garfinkel
Laura VanZee Taylor
Cinematographer:Laura VanZee Taylor
Editor:Laura VanZee Taylor
Eli Olson
Cast:Maris Degener
Print Source:ro*co films
Note Writer:Cindy Lou Peeples


Finding herself instantly drawn to the healing power of yoga, teenage Maris finds ways to combat the once-crippling mental health issues that defined her adolescence as she begins her studies to become a yoga instructor at only 16 years old. After a childhood of mounting anxiety, depression, and eating disorders, Maris' parents check her into a hospital to help her confront her illness. Still struggling to cope after being released, Maris begins exploring various methods of therapy, beginning with art and poetry before discovering the life-changing effects that yoga has on both her body and mind. Through her teaching and her blog, Maris strives to inspire others by speaking openly about her struggles and promoting self-acceptance.

Expected Guests: Director Laura VanZee Taylor; Producer Ariana Garfinkel; Subject Maris Degener  (All Screenings)

Producers Helen Yenser & Melissa Berton (Period. End of Sentence.) (All Screenings)

Included Shorts

Period. End of Sentence. (26min) More

Additional Information

Laura VanZee Taylor’s narrative and documentary films have screened at festivals including Ashland Independent, Hollywood Film Festival, Austin Shorts Fest, and Oscar®-qualifying LA Shorts Fest. Her passions include arts education, mental health awareness, and stories of women and children. I Am Maris is her first feature film, and she’s in production on her next. Before filmmaking, she spent a decade working in publishing as a creative strategist and editorial director. She’s a graduate of the San Francisco School of Filmmaking and holds a Master’s Degree in Theatre from University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelor’s Degree from Lewis and Clark College.