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A Night of Insight: Screening of THE LAST ACT with Amy & Patsy Benson

Join us at the SJI Library on Friday, March 8 at 7 PM for the screening of THE LAST ACT. This event offers more than just a film; it's a chance to engage with director Amy Benson and her mother, Patsy Benson, the film's subject. Their presence will provide exclusive insight through a Q&A session after the short film, making it a not-to-be-missed opportunity for an in-depth discussion about the film's themes and production.

An elderly woman, Patsy Benson, with swimming goggles is floating gracefully in a swimming pool, viewed from an underwater perspective. The blue handwriting-style text "The Last Act" overlays the image at the top, with the subtitle "A documentary short" in smaller print below. The image conveys a sense of peace and tranquility, with light reflecting through the rippling water, suggesting themes of reflection and perhaps the latter stages of life as explored in the documentary.


Patsy Benson, an active nonagenarian actress who is good at living contemplates her roles in life after she realizes that it’s unsafe for her to continue to live on her own. She shops for a retirement community and says goodbye to her best friend.

About Amy Benson, Director

photograph of director Amy Benson
Amy Benson, Director

Amy has been producing, directing, and editing documentary films since 2005. Her feature about the Darnal family in Nepal, Drawing the Tiger, was a granted project of the Sundance Institute, Fork Films, and recipient of the Points North Fellowship. It premiered at Hot Docs in April 2015 and screened in over 50 festivals worldwide. It was awarded the Best Feature Jury prize by the Northwest Film Forum, the Documentary Feature Award from CAAM Fest, the Jury Award for the Best Documentary at the Asiatica Film Festival, and the UNICEF award at Film South Asia. The sequel, The Eldest Son, premiered at the Kathmandu Mountain Film Festival in 2017 and is featured on Tasveer TV. Her ongoing work with the subjects of these two films continues as they film their lives in Nepal during and post-COVID.

Filmmakers Statement

Patsy Benson, a 92-year-old retired actress, housewife, and widow, lives alone. She cooks, shops, swims, laughs, walks, makes friends. Her eyesight and hearing are failing her. When the fire alarm went off in her apartment and she was unable to negotiate the dark stairwell by herself, she realized with finality that it was unsafe for her to continue to live on her own.

There is no room for her in our apartment. We don’t know if she can afford an assisted living facility, but we schedule tours to check them out anyway. Neither of us wants to make this big decision for her to move. But, by golly, we will film the process as we do.


This free event also includes the screening of SHE MARCHES IN CHINATOWN with Director Della Chen in attendance. No tickets or RSVP are required.

Thank you to our 2024 Best of the Fest Sponsors!

Presenting SponsorSaviBank

A white lighthouse with a red roof stands in the middle of a blue lake. The lighthouse has a black lantern room at the top, and windows with white frames. Trees line the shore of the lake in the background. Text at the top of the image reads "PRESENTING SPONSORS." Below that is a logo for KCTS 9 and a logo for SaviBank.

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