Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Life, Animated (2016) USA

Where the sidekicks rules...

Documentary, Animation, Drama, Family, Romance.

Approximately 6-minute read.

     This is life and it is animated. We all grew up watching animations believed they are real. They are our first friends and also the first step to understand between the real and unreal. So what happens if you have never got as far as to know they are simply the fictional characters. This film is not about that, but there's a reason to I bring that up in here.

     This film is about a boy named Owen Suskind, who developed autism at the age of 3. Since then the journey of his life has been very hard, especially for his family who had tried to understand and find a solution for it. But until at one stage of his childhood, after years of observation, they have found a way to connect with their lost son in his own world as the way he desired to meet/accept them at last.

     It was not the permanent cure they have been looking for, but it enabled an access to what so far we had struggled to make that kind of progress. All we common people know is that autistic people are sensitive, but genius or mastered in one particular thing they love the most. There's a pattern, and we have to jump in onto it to clear the way to bring both the worlds together. This had been done in the past, so in the present, but this film gives a new perspective to learn new methods.

     This is not some medical achievement, but the desperate Owen's family found a way. That's a lovely family, they never gave up on him. His big brother as well, trying to teach the grownup's form of love was honest and realistic. Beyond that, his plan for their future together, which eventually one day would come. I know that some of the scenes were recreated from the Owen's life, just for this documentary film. Particularly, I was impressed by the romance parts which reminded me 'Gabrielle'. But hearbreaking at certain satge.

 I created a story about sidekicks searching for a hero in my head, and I called it 'The Land of the Lost Sidekicks'. 

     I don't know who did the animation for this, but I loved it all. They used them to narrate the tale very beautifully. There are many fans in the world who love the sidekicks from their favourite films/animations. Even sometimes, I love them more than the film's heroes. If you do as well, try this, but this film is not about them and they were mostly the blurred animation version. Or you can say, except the film clips, the remaining original animations were simple sketch and acceptable quality.

     In reality, I don't know the whole life story of Owen, but according to this film, what I learnt, I truly admire his father Ron. He's lucky to have such a father. This film was based on the book he wrote of the same name. And the whole family's effort given a new life to Owen. This film is nominated for the Oscars in the Best Documentary Feature list. But I'm not sure it'll win. Anyway a big thanks to the filmmakers to bring this up.

     I know Disney is aware of this film since they allowed their contents to use in it. They can make a feature film out of it, a neat biopic. That would be a great honour for such a big fan of their works. But I'm particularly interested in the Owen's vision about his 'The Land of the Lost Sidekicks'. It's nothing less than the Marvel's 'The Avengers', but for the kids and for the fans of Disney's 2D animations like me from the pre 2000.

     This film is not under-appreciated, but under-recognised as of now. So I hope you put this into your watch list. It is a good family film, a message in it. We're surrounded by all kinds of people, so it does not matter if the film is not for us, at least you will learn something out of it. That's the any documentary film's notion, as always. You might have seen films about autism like 'Rain Man' to 'I Am Sam' to many more and this one is real as most of them are. Definitely worth giving it a try.

Suitable for:
Tween, Teen, Adult, All

Final verdict:
Ignore, Bad, Average, Good, Excellent

Similar movies:
Gabrielle, I am Sam, Rain Man, Haridas, What's Eating Gilbert Grape, Jack of the Red Hearts.

External link(s):

WCA geolocation:
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