Saving 10,000 – Winning a War on Suicide in Japan

There’s an enemy at work in Japan. Around 300,000 people made the decision to end their lives through suicide in the last ten years. Ironically, nobody is willing to speak up about the problem, yet there are books and websites giving step-by-step instructions on how and where to kill yourself. This thought-provoking documentary is sure to make you take a good look inside and question your beliefs.

According to experts, suicide seems to always be at the back of the minds of Japanese. Most people literally believe that suicide is a beautiful thing. In fact, it’s not uncommon for people to search online for somebody who is feeling as much despair as they are– not to seek help or to comfort each other– but to kill themselves together. Some think it’s comforting to die with somebody else.

Maybe the media is partly to blame. When a suicide is reported, the gory details are sure to be included. It’s not uncommon for up to 1,000 persons to then copy that one suicide during the following weeks. People feed on sensationalism, not so much on finding solutions. Dramatized scenes of people hanging themselves or jumping out of buildings are common on Japanese television leading viewers to believe that it’s easy and painless.

Perhaps life insurance companies are to blame too. People sign the policy and wait for the specified amount of time to go by. It could be twelve months or twenty-four, that doesn’t really matter because as soon as the time is up, they end their lives. The grieving family is taken care of financially, though.

When people face serious problems, they need to make choices and changes in order to find solutions. In Japan, suicide is seen as a viable option.

The filmmaker, Rene Duignan, through interviews with ordinary Japanese citizens as well as experts in the field, has come up proposed solutions to help stop this epidemic. This documentary is the result of his work and has been released for free to encourage discussions on the solution.

Can one man fight against this mentality? Watch and see.

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