A Thousand Words was produced in my first year of the two-year documentary program at Stanford University. I was inspired to do a personal film because at that time it would give me the most freedom to explore a different form of documentary. When I told my mother I wanted to question my father about his experience in Vietnam, she replied “good luck, ’cause he’s never said anything to me about it.” My father was sent to Vietnam shortly after his marriage to my mother. When I was growing up, I never really thought deeply about what that could have been like. My family has always been one that struggled with communication. Though there are many contributing factors to that, there is no doubt in my mind that war is a silencer of the soul that passes through many generations. Throughout my journey of making this film, and hearing the stories of others, I have learned that we are not alone.
— Melba Williams, Director