Directed by Glenn Holsten, the “Hollywood Beauty Salon” at the center of the feature documentary of the same name, is described as an intimate beauty parlor that happens to be part of the NHS Germantown Recovery Community, which is a non-profit mental health program in Philadelphia that is administered by NHS Human Services.
Rachel “Hollywood” Carr Timms runs the beauty parlor, where staff and clients alike are all in the process of recovery from some form of mental health issue. By gathering together to get their hair done, share stories, and support one another, they find a way to rebuild their lives.
The film is built around preparations for their annual “Hair Recovery Show”- their version of a beauty pageant – and it is via this exciting undertaking that allows the audience to meet the characters and hear their stories.
The documentary itself – which was workshopped at the Salon over the course of four years – actually ends up being part of the recovery process itself, and the subjects of the film played an active part in shaping their own narratives and determining the unique, individual style of their respective story arcs.
Using animation and other expressionistic effects to convey the interior lives of its subjects, the imaginative, emotional film continues to tour the international film festival circuit, and invites interested parties to host screenings in your city; inquiries can be sent to the producers via the film’s website here.
Director Glenn Holsten is an award-winning Philadelphia-based documentarian whose previous films include “OC87: The Obsessive-Compulsive, Major Depression, Bipolar, Asperger’s Movie,” a feature-length documentary about recovery from the depths of mental illness through filmmaking; “Saint of 9/11,” a biography of Father Mychal Judge, the Chaplain to the New York City Fire Department who died on 9/11 which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival; and most recently, “The Barefoot Artist,” a portrait of artist Lily Yeh which was released last year.
For more information about the award-winning film (winner 2016 Samsha Voice Award, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration), visit its website at http://hollywoodbeautysalonmovie.com.
Check out the film’s release poster (above) and trailer below: