In much of the media we consume, a man with a gun is removed from moral ambiguity: he is either an inhuman monster, a superhero saving the world, or a patriot serving his country. Death tolls rise without any perceived impact. Lives are taken without consequence.
We’ve spent a lot of time as a culture trying to reckon with the effects of the intense exposure to violence faced by soldiers, but what about the effects of similar exposure on those at home? How does this steady diet of violence (from the real-world carnage of war, mass shootings and police brutality, to the fictional, cartoonish bloodshed filling our screens) impact those coming of age in this era? When all they see are adults solving their problems with force, what does that teach kids about how to solve their own problems?
Most stories about disaffected, violent youth focus on boys. Stories about war are almost exclusively a male domain. But no one is immune to the imagery with which we are bombarded every day in this society. Young girls are equally at risk of being desensitized and damaged by this constant exposure.
With SADIE, I have tried to create a cautionary tale with humor and humanity that I hope will contribute to a larger cultural conversation. I set out to write a war film where the soldier was a 13-year-old girl and the battlefield was the trailer park where she lived. Sadie goes to war against her enemy and the wake of her deeds may affect her whole life. By considering that I hope that the audience might consider the wake of the deeds we perpetrate as a culture, and the enduring damage they do to us all.
— Megan Griffiths, Writer/Director