jessica’s tree (NZ)

official selection

Jessica’s Tree is an incredibly personal view of what it is to be suicidal and what you can do to help.

Jessica’s Tree is an insightful and revealing story about what suicide looks like from the inside, from someone looking back out at those wanting to help.

The series is an ambitious narrative puzzle told through the eyes of Jazz Thornton, a 22-year-old Film School graduate who lost her close friend Jess to suicide 3 years ago.

Director Jazz Thornton has been suicidal and after her friend Jess took her own life Jazz knew that Jess’s story was important. In Jessica’s Tree Jazz pulls together the threads of Jess’s story by re-connecting the people who came together over the last 24 hours of Jess’s life. For that 24 hours, Jess was missing. Hers was the absent voice that could have told them all everything they wanted to know, because suicide leaves so many questions, there is so much people wish they understood. Jazz is, in part, that missing voice. Her own experience with suicide gives Jessica’s Tree an incredibly personal view of what it is to be suicidal.

Jessica’s Tree is Jazz Thorton’s ambition to build bridges between those who are suicidal and those around them who can help.

Something Jazz understands very well is that people who are suicidal often feel silenced. Will they be believed? Will they be heard? Will they be helped? She also understands what’s it’s like to be on the other side trying to help and she shares incredible insight to how we can do that.

  • Best International Non Fiction
  • Best Directing – Jazz Thornton
  • Best Editing – Julie Alp, Margot Francis

Cinematographer: James Moore
Editor: Julie Alp, Margot Francis

Director: Jazz Thornton
Writer: Cass Avery
Producer: Alex Reed, Cass Avery
Key Cast: Jazz Thornton