From June 7, 2011
Sons of Perdition is a riveting documentary following three teenage boys who escape the right‑wing‑Mormon polygamist sect headed by Warren Jeffs.
The director, Tyler Measom, was present for a Q&A session following the Friday, June 3 screening at the Little Rock Film Festival.
Tyler and his wife worked on the film for five years. During the time when the movie was being made, most escapees fled to a rapidly‑growing city in close proximity to their families.
Since boys in the sect work construction sites from the age of eight, and there was a lot of construction work within the city, their skills allowed them to find employment and earn money.
An audience member asked whether the filmmakers ever felt afraid while they were making the movie?
Tyler said yes. Members from the sect drove white vans; the filmmakers saw white vans driving by their locations. Some of the drivers took photographs. At one point, stones were thrown at them.
Another question was, how did you find these particular boys?
Tyler explained that a number of teenagers were interviewed. Bruce, Joe, and Sam had that “certain something.” Plus they travelled in a group, so their stories were intertwined, and yet they followed different paths. These boys were also outgoing and articulate, and enjoyed being in a movie.
Tyler felt that he could relate somewhat to their difficulties, having left the Mormon Church himself.
He volunteered that, while they were filming Sons of Perdition, they kept true to documentary filmmaking. There were no re‑enactments. The boys were never told “say that again,” or “walk through here.” Said Tyler, “We missed a lot of great stuff, but we also caught a lot of great stuff.
Indeed they did.