Straight Up Impact

The Intersection of Film and Social Impact


At the intersection of film and social impact, Straight Up Impact presents inspiring stories that have the power to provoke cultural shifts and drive tangible change. We finance, develop and produce feature film series, documentaries, and short-form content.


Meaning In Madness series (2021)

This docu-film series focuses on the key systemic issues that are contributing to skyrocketing rates of depression, anxiety, and even suicide among young adults and teens. Each film addresses a different issue and tells the unique, true, personal story of a teenager or young adult struggling to find meaning within our cultural madness. 

Producers: Kate Cohen and Marisa Polvino

Executive Producers: Pam Roy, Alex Vesely, Trevor Davis, Sir Ken Robinson, Kate Robinson 

Associate Producer: Sally Ratigan

Film One


How Our Industrialized Education System Affects Teenage Mental Health

Mackenzie, a 17-year-old public high school senior, shares her personal story about how the education system created an environment leaving her feeling anxious, depressed, and believing her worth was nothing more than a number or a test score.

Producers: Kate Cohen and Marisa Polvino

Executive Producers: Sir Ken Robinson, Pam Roy, Kate Robinson, Trevor Davis

Co-Executive Producers: Alexander Vesely, Sally Ratigan

Director: Matt Ogens

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Film Two


The Overprescibing of Psychiatric Medications for Children

Luna, a 15-year-old student, shares her experience of being prescribed psychiatric medications since she was 8 years old.  

Filming April 2021. More to come soon. 

Producers: Kate Cohen and Marisa Polvino

Executive Producers: Pam Roy, Trevor Davis

Co-Executive Producers: Alexander Vesely, Sally Ratigan

Director: Kate Cohen

Film Three

Our Culture’s Role in Influencing the Impact of Social Media on Youth

Producers: Kate Cohen and Marisa Polvino

Executive Producers: Pam Roy, Alexander Vesely, Trevor Davis

Inspired by the Meaning in Madness Series

B-Unbound is a community-based network that connects young people, ages 14-24, to mentors, experiences, and each other with the goal of promoting wellbeing through meaningful relationships and interest exploration.


Be You. Unbound.

Learn more:

In partnership with Big Picture Learning

Joseph Merrick (2022)

Treading unfamiliar ground in a beautiful and touching exploration of his life, JOSEPH MERRICK is an unlikely love story between Joseph and the young woman assigned to his care at the Fawsley Hall Estate, where he’s been invited to experience nature and leisure in the final weeks of his life. At its core, this is a human story of redemption and dignity – about the man behind the disfigurement.

Producers: Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, Mike Medavoy, David Dobkin

Director: Kornél Mundruczo 

Man’s Search for Meaning (2023)

MAN’S SEARCH FOR MEANING is an adaptation of Viktor Frankl’s iconic, best-selling memoir. It tells the heart-wrenching yet inspirational story of Frankl, a renowned psychoanalyst in Vienna who eradicated the alarming rate of suicides prior to WWII through his groundbreaking psychological approach of healing through meaning, and chronicles his experiences as a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps. The book has sold over 15 million copies, has been translated into 24 languages and is considered one of the most influential books in the United States. 

Producers: Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, Alex Vesely, Tony Robbins 

Executive Producer: Pam Roy


Co-founders Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, and Pam Roy originally joined together to create the Meaning in Madness series. Their collective efforts and complementary styles inspired their desire to produce additional content with the power to positively impact humanity.

Straight Up Impact is a spinoff of Straight Up Films which was started by Kate Cohen and Marisa Polvino. Straight Up Films continues to produce entertainment-oriented films as well as branded content.

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