The Diabetic

Directed by Mitchell Stafiej



Mitchell Stafiej


Mitchell Stafiej, Beatrice Scharf Pierzchala


Mitchell Stafiej


Maica Armata, Travis Cannon, James Watts


Ariane Falardeau St. Amour, Beatrice Scharf Pierzchala, Mitchell Stafiej

Sound Designer

Mitchell Stafiej




Mitchell Stafiej


Type One Films

Official website

Canada, Quebec 2022 94 mins OV English/Polish Subtitles : English
Genre DramaExperimental

Montreal’s West Island is a lonely wasteland for Alek, an aimless, 30-year-old Type 1 diabetic. After returning home in the hopes of reliving his teenage “glory days,” he finds that most of his friends have moved away or moved on within the dull comforts of suburban life. Only Matt, one of Alek’s old acquaintances, is free to spend the night. Tensions quickly mount as Matt represents everything Alek hates about suburban life and Alek seems unwilling and unable to let go of his rose-tinted dreams of the past. Things go from bad to worse as the night goes on, and Alek’s dream turns into a nightmare. Shot on HI-8 and converted to 16mm, THE DIABETIC’s underlying anxieties are reflected in its grungy, textured aesthetics that externalize Alek’s disturbed inner world.

For just over a decade, director Mitchell Stafiej has built his unique aesthetic sensibilities with films like FOUND, A and THE DEVIL’S TRAP. Acutely in tune with the dynamic texture of image and sound, THE DIABETIC feels like the culmination of his work so far. In his own words, this project explores the aesthetics of disability cinema. How do disabled filmmakers, historically left out, forge a new aesthetic that reflects their position within the world and cinema? Stafiej’s vision brings together the suburban malaise of Todd Solondz and Todd Haynes while channelling the “it happened one night” anxiety of films like Jarmusch’s NIGHT ON EARTH and the Safdies’ GOOD TIME. – Justine Smith