I first saw this film at its premier at Kendal Mountain Festival and recommended you seek it out at one of the screenings that have since taken place around the world. Now, it’s available on general release, to mark the United Nations’ International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21st. Here’s the full press release:
Following its critically acclaimed reception at film festivals and screening events around the world since its limited release in November 2021, now, in the lead up to the United Nations’ International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21st, it’s a particularly relevant moment to unveil After the Storm film to the public.
Filmed by Andy McCandlish and directed, produced and edited by McCandlish and Andy McKenna – After the Stormreveals the remarkable story of Scots Asian diversity pioneer Aneela McKenna who has tackled racism and discrimination in her own life with the help of mountain biking.
Applauded by cyclists and non-cyclists alike, this revealing short film invites viewers to open their hearts and minds to how racial discrimination feels, and consider the way it impacts on individuals and society at large, and invites everyone to recognise and actively stand up to racism in order to be the best, most enriched version of themselves.
If the film can engage even one person who would ordinarily have disengaged from this kind of story or argued that racism does not exist in 2021 – it’s done its job. We hope viewers are left with a sense of what discrimination can feel like, how it affects others, and to reflect upon what they can do to help enrich society and the world by making it a more diverse and inclusive space.Aneela McKenna
A few years ago, Aneela McKenna was at breaking point. Embroiled in a racism grievance case against her boss, her self-confidence, respect and belief had plummeted to an all-time low and she needed a timeout.
Taking an extended career break, Aneela embarked on a solo mission on her trusty mountain bike in search of what she most needed to mend and renew herself. She turned to her favourite place in the world – the Outer Hebrides Islands, the site of many happy memories of adventures with her husband Andy.
In this film Aneela and Andy revisit these remote Scottish islands and pedal their way through life’s ups and downs. Amid stunning scenery, the pair ride and reflect on the realities which drove her to this unspoilt landscape and the refreshed outlook and strength she returned home with.
Moments of pain, frustration, triumph, laughter and defiance are uncovered on the beaches, in the waves, over a bothy fireside dram and amidst the mountains where their connection to Scotland and one another is strongest.
After the Storm reveals how Aneela’s solo trip sparked changes in the couple’s lives – both personally and professionally – and they ask everyone to look in the mirror, face up to racial discrimination, consider their role as allies, and become truly anti-racist.
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