Santiago Rizzo – QUEST

QUEST, the new film by Santiago Rizzo, is autobiographical, based on his relationship with an amazing Berkeley Willard Middle School teacher and coach, Tim Moellering, and his “PROMISES NEVER BROKEN.”


Co-written with Tim Moellering, Santiago promised him to make the movie as he died.


Tim Moellering, beloved Willard Middle School coach. After his death, Berkeley named a baseball field in his honor.


Santiago credits Tim with helping him overcome his abusive home life.


Dash Mihok plays Tim and Gregory Kasyan plays “Mills”.


Lou Diamond Phillips plays the stepfather, “Gus”. Betsy Brandt plays his mother, “Ruth”.


Lakeith Lee Stanfield plays “Diego”, Mills’ older artist friend, who paints the “Trust Your Struggle” mural above to honor him.


Have empathy for everyone.

Put yourself in someone else’s skin and walk around in it.

Tell the truth.

You’ll have less to remember. You know you never lied and eventually people will trust you.

Be Reliable.

Do what you say you were going to do. Even if it means showing up on time. People will trust you.

Assume Positive Intent.

If they are incompetent, so be it, but it doesn’t hurt you to assume they are doing their best.

Be Physically Active.

It’s better than any drug. It’s fun and can be a boon to your social life. If you are running an errand, walk or ride a bike because you’ll feel better. It may not be obvious at first but it adds up.

Just do it.

If the choice is between sitting around and doing nothing or doing something, do something every single time.

Don’t blame anyone.

No one is to blame for anything. Only you can change what you do. If you blame someone else, you can’t solve the problem. Instead, you are telling someone else to solve the problem. If you don’t blame then you will be able to take control.

Your possessions can be replaced.

People are obsessed with their possessions. Letting your possessions control you is a terrible way of living. When you can let them go, you become free. There’s little relationship between wealth and happiness.

Carpe Diem.

Seize the Day. Accomplish something everyday. Otherwise you’re wasting time. There’s always something wonderful to experience. Go do it.

Solve your problems.

Some people like to have problems so they have something to complain about. Don’t waste time. It also gives you something to do. Something to strive for.


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  1. Pingback: At-Risk Youth: Quest Interview Forthright Radio - Mendocino Film Festival

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