In 2015, 1.8 million missing persons cases were filed with the FBI with only 54,900 of those people later being located. Dating back to 1990, every year has seen over at least a million cases created, with some years seeing over 2 million. The location rate has been above 50,000 only 3 times in that 23-year span (source). Whilst these statistics are staggering, as a society, we have normalized the “Missing Person” phenomenon, with a missing person’s picture on a milk carton carrying the same impact as the bar code.
Dysfunctional families and family estrangement are also commonplace in today’s society, with, according to a U.S. study, an estimated 7% of people being dethatched from their mother, and 27% detached from their father (source). Despite these stats, and trends, filmmaker Rob McCallum needed answers about his own family situation and decided to role cameras.
On Friday August 19th 2016, a unique and powerful documentary, “Missing Mom,” will make its US premiere as part of Atlanta Underground Film Festival. The film, which sees the initial mystery widen and take dark turns, sees McCallum goes on the road with his brother, Chris, a police officer, in hope of finding out what happened to their mother, Terri Lee Parker, who’s been missing for almost 25 years. A mystery movie born from a family myth, the circumstances of her disappearance were unknown to Rob and Chris – one day she was there, and the next she was not. The duo crisscross the country, talk to family members and uncover a past riddled with half-truths, partial memories, and questionable stories. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions.
“Everyone has a mother, or has had a mother in their lives, but not everyone knows who that person is. After almost 25 years of not knowing, we had nothing to lose and everything to gain. I hope this film will inspire others to search for their loved ones. Even people who know where there family members are, but perhaps have an estranged relationship, might feel inspired to reconnect after watching this film.” McCallum said when discussing the motivation for making the film.
McCallum continued: “Most of my family were concerned about me making this film. At one point I was told not to release it, but I’ve always maintained that people can learn from what I endured on this journey, and maybe people will find the courage to start their own quest. You never know what you will discover if you start looking, which can be scary, but it’s also incredibly satisfying. Don’t let people talk you out of something that you know in your heart must be done”
Recently, “Missing Mom” won the IndieFEST Film Award for Merit for Artistic or Technical Aspects, and will be shown at additional festivals in North America and select theaters in Fall / Winter 2016. It’s tentatively slated for release on Digital, DVD & Blu-Ray on December 6, 2016.