Date: Sunday, July 24th, 2011 Time: 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Running Time: 45 minutes
Location: Mississauga Central Library Community Room (Second Floor)
“Growing up in America, Eddie lived the American dream. He achieved it all before the age of thirty—money, cars, women.”
These are the narrator’s opening words to the ground-breaking documentary film about how Eddie Redzovic, founder and host of the worldly-renowned The Deen Show, came to Islam.
However, the narrator’s next words are those that truly open this film: “But beneath the surface…”
And “beneath the surface” is the story of one man—a troubled and broken soul—who makes the streets his battleground and the nightclub his place of refuge. Yet, as he repeatedly throws himself into throes of violence and death, he discovers that his most dangerous battleground lies within…
The story of troubled Eddie—who was born in Buffalo, New York, to Yugoslavian immigrants—begins while Eddie is in Chicago, where his parents moved while he was still a child.
With two working parents and lots of time on his hands, young Eddie fills his days with what could only be described as every parent’s nightmare: bad friends, complete disregard for school, and, ultimately, gang membership.
“Children are like a garden,” Eddie’s uncle reflects regretfully on what happened to his nephew during those years. “If you miss [even] one week of watering, it’s overcome with weeds.”
Like so many troubled souls before him, it is within the somber solitude of a jail cell years later that Eddie realizes that his life is in disarray. Ironically, it is the absence of his closest companions—his fellow gang members, his “family”—that inspires this realization.
“I’m in a jail cell thinking…These people don’t care about me.”
Then comes the ultimate question that every soul must surely ask itself at least once upon this earth, “What am I doing with my life?”
Yet, even after his release, the light still doesn’t come on for Eddie…
It isn’t until he sinks deep into the insobriety of self-indulgence that the fault lines begin to make way to redemption…
But even after he embraces spirituality to feed his ailing soul, Eddie finds that his battle of the self is not yet over…
“You have three types of brothers…” Eddie tells the attendants to a lecture at a school he visits after accepting Islam and founding The Deen Show, “blood brothers…brothers in humanity…and brothers in [faith].”
And this film offers a moving story for each and every one of them—the members of our families, our brothers and sisters in humanity, and all people of faith.
In a world of Islamophobia, media-hyped “Islamic extremism,” and spiritual depravation, this documentary is a “must-see” for every journalist, every writer, every intellectual…
And every soul.
This film will touch each differently. But each will be touched.
This movie truly is, as the commentator said of Eddie himself, “an example of redemption.”