Private Project

Hungry Now

We’ve all driven right by them. We’ve all walked on by them, crossing to the other side out of caution. Who are they? What do they want? How did everyday children grow up to climb through a dumpster for half-eaten food, & end their winter days in a tent in the richest country in the world?

“Hungry Now” hopes to connect a few dots, where do these people come from? Connecting the kids being cared for by teachers in small rooms, to the sketchy shadows off the road. Voices you’ve never heard before are here, the mic is on and it’s not what you may expect to hear: the young couple by the supermarket dumpster; the man with the dark hat by the abandoned gas station on Main Street in Bangor, Maine, the man bundled into his wheelchair with everything he will ever own, fixed by the Penobscot bridge, not asking you for a thing.

These voices, including many of “The Helpers”, as Mr. Rogers called them, are contrasted by current Middle School students in the 2021 Cobscook TREE program, which applied a complete trauma-sensitive and educational wellness plan to children in Downeast Maine. This film is about childhood hunger and it’s memories, but it can’t be about one thing. “Hungry Now” traces the tragic path where a fresh-faced Middle Schooler starts below the poverty line, & lands with stability or chaos, depending on what lies between those school & adult years.

Composer/Filmmaker Alan Kryszak directed “Hungry Now”, the 5th feature documentary with a wonderfully dedicated crew and researchers: Sam LaRusse, Nicholas Sanborn, Amanda Sawyer, Robin Hadlock Seeley, Hannah Somers-Jones, Suzie Milkowich, Aiyla Petty, Amanda Quinn, Megan Racila, and Beth Staples of Maine at Machias’ Downeast Documentary program.

The common thread of disadvantaged folks sharing what little they have is told by college students from The Congo, a survivor of an “Indian Residential School”, an orphan in El Salvador at a sanctuary for abandoned children, and a homeless man in Bangor who insisted the food gift card be given to the couple at the dumpster, “someone more in need”.

Revelations can be small, and very quiet, sometimes.

  • Alan Kryszak
    Privacy & The Power of Secrets, 2020's Got A Ring To It, When The Chevy Breaks, Who Made You In America?, Whatever Works: Exploring Opiate Addiction, Time Without Guilt
  • Alan Kryszak
  • Alan Kryszak
  • Downeast Documentary Film Crew
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Documentary on Childhood Hunger, Documentary on The Homeless, Documentary on Educational Support
  • Runtime:
    1 hour
  • Completion Date:
    February 14, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    500 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Alan Kryszak

Al Kryszak is a Composer/Guitarist/Artist with 35 years of concert, silent film and visual work, released on KINO International DVD, iTunes and online. Recent film projects he's written & directed include the new Documentary "Hungry Now"; "Privacy & The Power of Secrets" (Premiered at The Hague Global Cinema Festival in 2020), "When The Chevy Breaks ( How Small Towns Fix Big Problems)", "Who Made You In America" & "Whatever Works: Exploring Opiate Addiction", several premiering on Maine Public Television with student film crews from UMaine, Machias. His music video "Time Without Guilt" premiered in 2018 at the Toronto Short Film Festival, & "2020's Got A Ring To It" was selected for The New Haven International Film Festival in 2021.

New music includes “Murmur Rations” (2021), “Lux Internum” (12 Nocturnes for Solo Piano), “Soft Clowns of the Sea”, "Transparent preludes" (Piano Collection), "All The Luck" (Clarinet and Orchestra) & the Piano Concerto. Kryszak's film & concert music has premiered at The Film Society of Lincoln Center, the LA Cinematheque, The Atlantic Center for the Arts & Symphony Space on a series hosted by Martin Scorsese. His string quartet & harp scores for KINO & Turner Classic Movies premiered in Boston last December.

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Director Statement

It was important to be able to walk right up to strangers, the script is in their heads, & they generously relayed the most personal stories of failure, hard hits & how they keep helping the next one, no matter what.