Issaquah native and filmmaker, Derek Bauer, has recently released a heart-warming road trip movie with Universal Pictures, entitled “Two Yellow Lines.”
The movie, shot in the Pacific Northwest, centers around the relationship of a girl and her father, who abandoned his daughter after a traumatic experience as a wildland firefighter left him emotionally scarred and unavailable. The story brings the two back together again when the father, Jack Elliot is asked to spend time and travel with his estranged daughter, Hanna.
The film deals with themes of grief, post-traumatic stress and abandonment as the characters rebuild a relationship they thought was lost.
Bauer said he and his friends and partners, Billy Zeb Smith, Jake Olson and Zac Titus wrote the movie together after experiencing their own grief and trauma, Bauer was grieving the loss of his father and Titus the loss of his sister.
According to Bauer, Titus came up with the idea of a motorcycle road trip movie after his daughter shared a motorcycle road trip with her grandfather who she grew closer to along the way.
Titus and his real-life daughter, Alexis, play the father and daughter in the movie, making for an interesting and unique dynamic on set and on the screen.
“They could pull on their own experiences together,” Bauer said. “It lends itself to something really authentic.”
For what was Bauer’s first film that he would write and direct, he said the film production crew was much smaller than what he usually would want, but he said this only added to the intimacy and efficiency of the filmmaking process. He said at its heart it felt like, and truly was, a group of friends making a movie.
With a small convoy consisting of some small vehicles and an RV, the team shot the movie across Montana and othe Northwest locations, allowing the setting to shine as they were able to “strip it away,” and be present in the beautiful locations, much like the characters in the movie.
Bauer said as a Issaquah-native, the Northwest and its environment have been a huge part of his own life and is a huge part of the soul of this film. When he was young, he aspired to be a nature photographer, and with this film he believes he “captured the essence” of the beautiful Northwest locations they used in the film.
Ultimately, the film is about healing from trauma, forgiveness and the importance of connection in our lives, Bauer said.
“Obstacles present in our lives might seem so insurmountable or impossible to overcome that we resign ourselves to them – we stay in our own lane,” Bauer said of the implicit message in the film. “I hope people will see that it doesn’t take much to change things. We just have to be willing to take that first step.”
For more information on the movie, or to stream it, click here.