Ana Luísa Santos / Ana Patrícia Lapa / Mariana Almeida / Mercedes Alves

SPOT THE ELEPHANT, an adaptation of the film Elephant (2003) by Gus Van Sant, takes place in the final scene in which Alex kills two of his colleagues in cold blood. Its final sequence triggered our curiosity in analyzing a topic that will never have a definitive answer. From the premise “What if we saw the Elephant in the Room?”, we wanted to get to the heart of the question, by exploring a problem that is often dissected but never fully understood, given the complexity of the matter. Is a criminal act something innate? What is society’s contribution to this whole situation? Could it be prevented?

As Ortega y Gasset said, “Man is himself and his circumstance”. Starting from this premise, we will approach the intentions, the context in which a potential crime aroses. We will approach not only by looking at the “monster” that was boiling under pressure and exploded, but by guiding you on a journey that dissects the origins and patterns that crossed the life of an American boy who decided to commit a massacre at his school. A definitive response seems quite difficult to achieve; certain behaviors and situations are difficult to spot because they are so intertwined with the american culture and its way of living. By dissecting the life of Alex and the events that have led to the massacre, we realize the culture of violence in the United States of America is the big layered Elephant.