“The Smell of Burning Ants” is a haunting documentary on the pains of growing up male. It explores the inner and outer cruelties that boys perpetrate and endure. The film provokes the viewer to reflect on how our society can deprive boys of wholeness. Through formative events of a boy’s life, we come to understand the ways in which men can become emotionally disconnected and alienated from their feminine side. The common dismissal that “boys will be boys” evolves into the chilling realization that boys frequently become angry, destructive and emotionally disabled men. “The Smell of Burning Ants” illustrates how boys are socialized by fear, power and shame. The film is a catalyst for discussion and an opportunity to begin the process of healing the wounds of childhood.
Jay Rosenblatt is an internationally recognized artist who has been working as an independent filmmaker since 1980 and has completed over twenty-five films. His work explores our emotional and psychological cores. They are personal in their content yet universal in their appeal.
His films have received over 100 awards and have screened throughout the world. A selection of his films had theatrical runs at the Film Forum in New York and at theaters around the country.
Eight of his films have been at the Sundance Film Festival and several of his films have shown on HBO/Cinemax, the Independent Film Channel and the Sundance Channel. Articles about his work have appeared in the Sunday NY Times Arts & Leisure section, the LA Times, the NY Times, Filmmaker magazine and the Village Voice.
Jay is a recipient of a Guggenheim, USA Artists and a Rockefeller Fellowship.
Jay is originally from New York and has lived in San Francisco for many years. He has been a film… read more
Maybe it's because I've become close friends with people who bullied me in school, but I feel that Rosenblatt needs to move on. Dwelling on the past, and the sick things we do early on, is just plain unhealthy. The film is too overwrought to qualify as a legitimate indictment of bullying, and too poetic to win over bullies to the side of live-and-let-live.