Infinite Menus, Copyright 2006, OpenCube Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Sundance Film Festival: "Life, Animated" more than just Disney magic
Jan 27, 2016 | 4811 views | 0 0 comments | 497 497 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Photo by Tom Bergmann | Courtesy of Sundance Film Festival
Photo by Tom Bergmann | Courtesy of Sundance Film Festival

Not Rated

Directed by Roger Ross Williams

Based on the book by Ron Suskind


Heroes can be found in unexpected places.

That's one of the beautiful things about "Life, Animated," an engrossing, illuminating documentary that follows Own Suskind, an autistic young man who journeyed from almost total silence to re-engagement with the world. That change came in large part because of Disney movies, a world where good always triumphs over evil, true love always wins, and it's possible to memorize the script by heart.

The movie gently and honestly unfolds Owen's story from his own perspective, as well as that of his parents and his older brother (the documentary is based on a book by Ron Suskind, Owen's father). The connecting thread is beautiful animation, much of it narrating a story Owen himself created – "Protector of the Sidekicks."

Everything is woven together magnificently by the director, cinematographer and editor, feeling fresh and real while at the same time always connecting back to the story. The dynamics of Owen's family are gentle but also very realistic, full of love but not without the occasional hiccup. That, however, just makes their bond feel more real, and director Roger Ross WIlliams honestly portrays both the love and the worry.

Even if you don't know anyone with autism, "Life, Animated" is so wonderfully human that you'll feel like you know Owen by the end of the film.  You'll cheer for him and his family, and ache for them, too. And when it's done, you'll want to watch the movie all over again.  

Comments-icon Post a Comment
No Comments Yet
Postings are not edited and are the responsibility of the author. You agree not to post comments that are abusive, threatening or obscene. Postings may be removed at the discretion of
Follow us on: