USA | 93 MINUTES
ENLIGHTEN US: THE RISE AND FALL OF JAMES ARTHUR RAY
Female Director(s), Documentary, NY Director(s)
“Are you with me?” These are telling words spoken by James Arthur Ray to filmmaker Jenny Carchman as the tale of this once-star motivational speaker begins to unfold. His meteoric rise and fall, as well as his return to the industry following his negligent homicide conviction in the deaths of three clients at a sweat lodge ceremony is more than just a story of one individual. It’s a story of hope, dreams, trust, betrayal and the quest for ‘enlightenment.’
The self-help industry is worth $11 billion dollars a year. It’s an industry that captivates those seeking happiness, release from suffering and those longing for a path and a leader to follow. James Arthur Ray for many who followed him was that leader to guide his flock. But as the story unfolds, as told by Ray himself and also by his followers, we learn that that path was fraught with danger and perhaps even greater suffering.
Through honest and candid interviews, interwoven with court footage and news archive, Enlighten Us asks the important questions, “What are we looking for” and “Who has the answers” and perhaps even the simple question “Why?”.