Unrest – a personal documentary by Jennifer Brea

The ME/CFS Foundation of South Africa is currently screening the award-winning documentary film, “Unrest”.


Jennifer Brea is an active Harvard PhD student about to marry the love of her life when suddenly her body starts failing her. Hoping to shed light on her strange symptoms, Jennifer grabs a camera and films the darkest moments unfolding before her eyes as she is derailed by M.E. (commonly known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), a mysterious illness some still believe is “all in your head.”

In this story of love and loss, newlyweds Jennifer and Omar search for answers as they face unexpected obstacles with great heart. Often confined by her illness to the private space of her bed, Jen is moved to connect with others around the globe. Utilizing Skype and social media, she unlocks a forgotten community with intimate portraits of four other families suffering similarly.  Jennifer Brea’s wonderfully honest portrayal asks us to rethink the stigma around an illness that affects millions of people. Unrest is a vulnerable and eloquent personal documentary that is sure to hit closer to home than many could imagine.

Unrest world-premiered January in the documentary competition at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, where it won a Special Jury Prize for editing. It has since screened at SxSW, CPH:DOX, HotDocs, River Run (Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature), the Nashville Film Festival (Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Feature), among Sheffield Doc/Fest (Illuminate Award). It also has a companion VR piece which premiered at Tribeca and won the Jury Award for best VR at Sheffield/DocFest. The film is also on the short list for an Oscar nomination.

Watch it online

Unrest is now available on iTunes, Netflix and Vimeo Video On Demand.



  • Bryanston: 13 September 2017
  • West Rand: 12 October 2017
  • East Rand: 16 November 2017 (includes Skype Q&A with Open Medicine Foundation)

Western Cape

Kenilworth, Cape Town | 28 Feb 2018
Includes Skype Q&A with overseas ME/CFS expert afterwards

Date: Wednesday 28 Feb 2018
Time: 18h30 for 19h00
Venue: Christ Church
Cnr Summerley Rd & Richmond Rd,
Cape Town
Entrance/Donation: R100 payable via EFT or online donation
(coffee, tea and snacks included)
Adults to accompany children younger than 16
RSVP: Please email your payment details to us at info@mecfssa.org to book your seat

For info on further screenings, please watch this space or follow us on social media.