“Behind the Bullet” director and producer Hedi Yewman (with microphone) talks to an audience about her eye-opening and heartbreaking film.

“Behind the Bullet” — A Profoundly Moving Documentary Film and Clarion Call for a Change in How We Handle Guns in America

Richard Medugno
Jun 9 · 3 min read

I don’t care what your position on the Second Amendment is, but you if don’t believe America has a problem with gun violence and we’re not doing enough to stop it, then you’re a lost cause. Move along. For the rest of us, the documentary film “Behind the Bullet” is a must-see.

The filmmaker behind the camera of “Behind the Bullet” is a Columbine High School graduate name Heidi Yewman. Heidi’s graduation preceded the mass shooting by a few years, but she knew one of the teachers who was gunned down in 1999.

Twenty years later, America has become numb to the nearly weekly rampages of men with guns (usually assault rifles) shooting up educational institutions, workplaces, entertainment venues, and houses of worship. The incidents are in the headlines for a day or two, then disappear from the public’s consciousness.

We need a longer and deeper perspective of these tragedies — and the millions of less spectacular ones that happen multiple times a day in our huge country but don’t make the national news. This is where Heidi’s eye-opening, heartbreaking 90-minute film comes in, providing “an in-depth look at four individuals who have pulled the trigger and the profound impact it’s had on their lives.”

I viewed the film on a Saturday afternoon on “wear orange” weekend with several hundred other concerned community members, most of whom are also part of the Moms Demand Action volunteer organization.

I was profoundly moved by the four true stories that the film shifts between. Interestingly, none of the four includes someone who was a perpetrator, victim, or witness of the classic love/intimate relationship-gone-wrong scenario nor a school mass shooting.

The four gun violence scenarios examined were: 1) a street-gang killing, 2) a child accidentally shoots a sibling with a gun found at home, 3) a man comes home to a burglary in progress and blasts one of the invaders, and 4) an attempted suicide victim.

Each of the shooters in these scenarios is interviewed many years after firing the shots that forever changed their and their loved ones’ lives. They are all still haunted by their actions even after they’ve all experienced forgiveness. It’s tough stuff, but a necessary view on the aftermath and the price that must be paid for shooting another human being — even if it was an accident or legally justified.

Watch the “Behind the Bullet” trailer. See the entire film with a box of tissues by your side. Then do something to about gun violence in America — beyond thoughts and prayers.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade