Elizabeth Lo, Hotel 22
Line 22 is a public shuttle operating 24/7 in Silicon Valley between San Jose and Palo Alto. The route takes ninety minutes. During the night the bus is taken by the homeless, who pay the fare and make the whole route, to get this way some kind of a shelter of its own kind. Name it shelter, or name it hotel (or drive-in, or drive-through, and so on and so forth), whichever suits you better. People in the area found for the bus a name sounding half ironically, half affectionately: Hotel 22.
It sounds weird, as everybody knows that Silicon Valley is the paradise of high tech, with huge wages, super-smart boys, great opportunities, all that stuff. The thing is that any paradise comes with a hell embedded. A paradise cannot exist without its counterpart. So when the tech boom came to Silicon Valley the living costs soared, and people who used to live in the region couldn't afford anymore a decent place for them. They were neither computer geeks nor mathematical geniuses, just ordinary guys like everywhere else. And seemingly such paradises are not for ordinary guys.
Film director Elizabeth Lo decided to see with her own eyes this reality of a hell inside the paradise. She took the 22 during the night and, to use her own words, what she saw seemed like a microcosm of the challenges confronting this dispossessed population. And her exploration gave birth to a poignant little film carrying as title just the nick of the bus, Hotel 22. A eight minute indie that is competing at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. A little cinematic gem.
You can watch the whole movie here:
Labels: Elizabeth Lo