Monday, May 10, 2021

"Through the Night": a 24-hour day care center in New York, the couple who runs it, and the moms who depend on it


LIRR, 2019

Through the Night” (2020, 75 minutes), directed by Loira Limbal, shows the world of 24 hour day care, run by a couple, Deloris and Patrick Hogan, from their purchased home in the New York area (appears to be Long Island). It appeared on PBS POV May 10.

Two other moms’ lives intersect with theirs, in the course of the film which runs from one holiday to tne next (Halloween through Christmas and beyond).

The film was apparently shot in 2019 (maybe 2018), before the pandemic, as it started.  Life in the center is very intimate, with children told they all love each other.  In one case, when a girl gets a time out, she is told to read a book and tell the provider what is in it 20 minutes later.

Toward the end Deloris becomes ill.  What she describes sounds like a stoke (possibly aneurysm), as she loses part of her vision and taste and smell, which she gradually gets back.  The film doesn’t say anything about Covid.  This work is so intimate it is hard to imagine how it could have functioned later during the pandemic.

The director afterward describes her mother being a home health aide on minimum wage. She also talks about the pandemic, essential workers, disparate sacrifice.

There was, on POV tonight, a short film, “Standing Above the Clouds” (15 min), directed by Jeanna Keane-Liu, depicts Hawaiian mom Pua Casa as she leads protesters on Mauna Kea against plans to build a new telescope facility. The mountain already houses one of the world’s large observatories.

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