Life is full of uncertainties. From the weather to the stock market, life, as modern society knows it, is completely unpredictable. Nevertheless, there is one commonality between every life, everyone will inevitably struggle. For many Americans, struggle may come in the form of not performing well in school, not earning enough money, or having toxic relationships, just to name a few. While these struggles are valid, they pale in comparison to many of the daily difficulties endured in developing or third world nations across the globe. All around the world, people live in absolute poverty, with no food, clean water, or medical resources to heal even the simplest illnesses. Western media, oftentimes, does not cover such subjects, so a filmmaker with the help of an international service organization is looking to help educate the masses.
Soren Dickens is a filmmaker who advocates providing digestible business education for people from all walks of life. Dickens believes it was being raised by an entrepreneur and an educator that inspired his life direction. Soren Dickens has centered his life around storytelling and education, building a production company, Platinum Peek Productions, and an edutainment platform, Hustle Hive TV, with his brother Eriksen Dickens. Although his occupation has taken him into filmmaking and edutainment, Dickens’s true passion lies in helping others. Pursuing his passion, this past January (Jan. 2020), Dickens traveled to Northern India as part of Rotary International’s efforts to provide polio vaccinations to children. The two-week trip consisted of going to various remote villages in hopes of vaccinating over 100 million children.
Initially, Dickens didn’t plan on documenting the experience, as he intended to step away from his typical work routine. The young filmmaker didn’t even take his camera. After arriving in India, Dickens met a fellow traveler, Rotarian and photographer, Laurie Edwards, and she offered to lend Dickens her extra camera so that the experience could be both photographed and videoed. The overwhelming sights and the sheer quantity of people living in communities and their dismal quality of life was something Dickens felt that needed to be documented. “The villages were so impoverished. There were no plumbing systems, no running water. Food was scarce, and resources were limited. These were the slums you read about or see in movies” he said. The village children would attend school, eat, and play on the same grounds that housed the village’s livestock.
These unfortunate conditions disheartened Dickens and many of the accompanying Rotarians, but to their surprise, the village children were remarkably happy. He described “there was a pack of happy, curious children following the Rotarians wherever they went throughout the villages”. The euphoric joy of these children, in spite of their dire living conditions, inspired Soren and his brother Eriksen to create a documentary using Soren’s footage.
After six months of rewatching and editing the footage, the fifteen minute documentary entitled “Two Magic Drops” debuted earlier this month on their website, Platinum Peek.The Dickens brothers intend to submit the film into numerous film festivals worldwide hoping to “inspire a sense of solidarity, while evoking self-reflection into what we have, and what we might take for granted”. The brothers feel like it’s impossible to not feel humbled watching the film, as it offers a rare perspective into living conditions rarely seen by the developed world.
While life in the United States, and other western countries, is far from ideal, “Two Magic Drops” illustrates why we should not take what we have for granted.