Do yogis take themselves too seriously? This was just one of the topics taken on by filmmaker and yogi Kate Churchill in Enlighten Up, a documentary which recently made its East Coast debut at New York City's International Film Center. The film, which Churchill directed and produced, follows yoga newbie Nick Rosen on his quest for enlightenment, first filming him in comic class situations then traipsing around the world in search of a life-changing yoga practice.
Judging from the high concentration of lycra and lack of sodas, the audience at our screening seems to have been made up primarily of yogis. (Though the documentary centers on yoga, the film paints broad enough strokes for even non-yogis to get in a few laughs.) It was inspiring to see B.K.S. Iyengar on the big screen, as well as other notable yoga instructors, from those living in remote tropics to those with star-studded studios. While the film centered on Nick's transformation, my friends and I were left wondering if it was really Kate who was on the journey. Maybe she'll turn the camera on herself next time!
The film will open on the West Coast this week, then travel around the country. For more info visit: http://enlightenupthefilm.com
Above: Nick Rosen with Shyamdas on the banks of the sacred Yamuna River in Northern India. Watch the trailer below: