The Sedona International Film Festival will partner with the Mental Health Coalition Verde Valley to present the Northern Arizona premiere of “The Last Shaman” showing Monday, July 24. There will be one show at 7 p.m. at the Mary D. Fisher Theatre.
Directed by Raz Degan, “The Last Shaman” is the story of James Freeman, a young man who decides to take matters in his own hands when faced with incurable depression. He undergoes a life-changing journey in the Amazon jungle that brings him a deeper understanding and acceptance of self.
Along the way, he experiences the healing properties of the tribal plant medicine ayahuasca and the world around it.
“At the beginning I set out to film how the healing magic of ayahuasca could potentially save the world,” Degan said. “The sacred knowledge of this plant and its healing modalities are undeniable. The tribal customs and healing that I witnessed take place during ceremonies blew my mind.
“At such a pivotal moment of uncertainty for many suffering around the world, I wanted to expose how these tribal traditions could help humanity. I found myself seduced not only by the plant’s ability to heal, but by those serving the plant, as well.
“While I did want to expose the beauty of this plant and its alternative way to healing, it’s not only about Western versus plant medicines,” Degan continued. “As I broaden the vantage point around the hot topic of ayahuasca, much more surfaced for the viewer to take in. The plant only needs water and light and it’s free, yet the commercialization of it is causing its end, hence the name ‘The Last Shaman.’”
“The Last Shaman” will show at the Mary D. Fisher Theatre on Monday, July 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 or $9 for Film Festival members. Call 282-1177 for tickets and more information. Both the theater and film festival office are at 2030 W. State Route 89A in West Sedona. Visit SedonaFilmFestival.org for more information.