Assembling the Pieces

Life is an expansive journey. When you’re in the moment, you can’t always see how important and impactful the little things are, and how the challenges are part of a larger puzzle. It is only with the benefit of hindsight that you can assemble the pieces and understand how they all fit together to bring you to a significant moment.

“No Lies Told Then” is a portrait of a life. The protagonist is “Sandra,” but the story is yours. 

It’s the strained relationship between parent and child. The insecurity and sense of not belonging during the awkward teenage years. It’s the passion you have for something but the fear you may not have what it takes to succeed. It’s the decision you make when you first leave home, and the human connections that sustain you during your loneliest times. It’s the moment you look at where you are versus where you want to be, and the choice you make thereafter.

There is only so much story that can be told in two hours of screen time. Tell too little, and you are left with a series of random images to which you can’t relate. Tell too much, and risk overwhelming the audience with information, losing the crux of the story in the process. 

As the filmmakers, we know everything about all of the characters we create. We know them better than we know ourselves. We know their brand of perfume, favorite color, where they go to clear their head — how they spend every minute of their day. Those are little things the audience may never know, but when we’re telling a story, every blank must be filled to inform what eventually makes it to the screen.

“Sandra” has been a part of our lives for many years and as we peeled back the layers, we learned more about her. 

When you see her onscreen the first time, it’s in the present. She’s successful, but how did she get there? Where did she get the idea for her first book? What was it like for her when she graduated from college? She has a unique sense of style. Where did it come from? 

With so much known about “Sandra,” it seemed wasteful to not share some of her backstory. We created a digital timeline for you — a repository of those little, yet pivotal, moments in her life. The film explores three specific periods of her life, but there is so much of her life that is only touched upon in the film, or not mentioned at all. We call it the “in between”. 

As we honed the timeline, parts of “Sandra’s” life were revealed to us for the first time. Like the isolation of graduate school. The sacrifices she made to make herself more acceptable at her job. The list goes on and on. 

But this isn’t solely a tool exploring “Sandra’s” journey. It is a companion piece to her story and an opportunity to extend the conversation beyond the fictional and into the home, brunch and a night out with our friends.

One of our long-term goals is to encourage you to look at yourself like “Sandra,” and evaluate where you are. Ask yourself if you are living your best life? Are you living your dream, moving toward it or have you abandoned it entirely? Whether we live one lifetime (or many, in the case of Shirley MacLaine), we only have one opportunity to live the one we’re in. And sometimes, it’s just nice to lose yourself in someone else’s world. 

Movies provide an escape. At its best, it is an extraordinary community experience. It can make strangers turn to each other to commiserate about what you watched, or talking for hours with the companion who joined you. The beauty of film is its ability to unite people from all different backgrounds all in the name of entertainment.

While you see the fruits of a community’s efforts to tell a story, much goes on behind the scenes. Hustling, begging, refocusing, shifting, crying, fighting and everything else. Somehow, that community perseveres and their work is what you see on the big screen. “No Lies Told Then,” like other independent endeavors, depends on a community of creatives and supporters to bring this story to life. 

If you would like to join our efforts, please drop us a line, share our newsletter with friends and encourage them to subscribe. Follow us on our social media channels. And if we’re doing something wrong, let us know that too.