Talking at Night

Saskatoon’s Mobile Crisis Centre provides 24/7 crisis resolution to people in distress. Its workers take calls from individuals in unpredictable and urgent situations, and respond in person when help is needed most. Director Eric Thiessen captures the behind-the-scenes experiences of the crisis centre’s staff, crafting a compelling observational portrait of a critically needed but largely unknown service.

  • Eric Thiessen
    Director
  • Eric Thiessen
    Writer
  • Jon Montes
    Producer
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Runtime:
    6 minutes 52 seconds
  • Country of Origin:
    Canada
  • Country of Filming:
    Canada
  • Language:
    English
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
  • Yorkton Film Festival
    Yorkton
    Canada
    May 25, 2018
    Ruth Shaw Award (Best of Saskatchewan)
  • DOXA Documentary Film Festival
    Vancouver
    Canada
    May 8, 2019
    Front Lines Shorts (Selection)
  • Rendezvous with Madness Festival
    Toronto
    Canada
    October 16, 2019
Distribution Information
  • National Film Board of Canada
    Country: Canada
Director Biography - Eric Thiessen

Eric Thiessen is a Saskatoon-based filmmaker as well as a Senior Communications Advisor with Federated Co-operatives Limited. His past work includes writing and directing for a Gemini Award-winning rodeo documentary series, Hell on Hooves. Eric holds a master’s degree from the University of Calgary and is an instructor at the Recording Arts Institute of Saskatoon, where he teaches film history to the next generation of Saskatchewan storytellers.

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Director Statement

When I learned about the Mobile Crisis Centre in my hometown of Saskatoon, I became interested in the experiences of the crisis workers who are vital to the operation of the non-profit organization. It was immediately clear that making a documentary about these workers was the best way to convey their challenging and unpredictable world and offer a glimpse into the range and volume of crises experienced in Saskatoon on a given night. The centre receives over 26,000 calls a year, an overwhelming number in a city of approximately only 250,000. I felt that the crises displayed in the film are relatable and understandable to almost anyone. I think it’s a great reinforcement that mental health, addictions and depression are much more common than we may tend to realize, but also that free and professional help is always available to those that need it.