Phoenix OCD Festival Confronts Stereotypes of Mental Illness

M.V. MoorheadNovember 10, 2017
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Thus some of the short films on the schedule have titles like The Stalker and Perks of Agoraphobia. But founder Steinberg notes that in this bill, “There are not many films about mental health. I did get many submissions, however I felt as if the films sent to me did not portray mental health in a way that fostered empathy, compassion and understanding… I wanted it to be more in the background, so as to not create politically controlled or directed content with an agenda.”

The inaugural edition of the fest was held last March at the Bell Canyon Super Saver Cinema at 27th Avenue and Bell, and this Saturday’s event will be at the same venue.

Steinberg, who is also a writer and painter, got involved in cinema through a personal relationship. “I got interested in film through an ex-boyfriend I had in college,” she recalls. “He went to get a film degree and I assume[d] I would get something more practical. However, after watching so many old movies, going through all his projects for his classes, seeing all his student showcases, film didn’t seem so unattainable. After we broke up, I saw film differently and the seed to direct and do cinematography had been planted.”

But Steinberg’s eclectic interests are represented in the OCD Fest’s programming: It includes not only films, but also readings by several writers and a performance by comedian Jill Blaine. All this, for a mere $10 at the door.

The OCD Film Festival plays at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, November 11, at the Super Saver Cinemas 8, 2710 W. Bell Rd., Suite #1125. Go to for details.

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