Monday, April 18, 2011

HBO Documentary 'Autism: The Musical'




This Emmy winning documentary directed by Tricia Regan, originally aired on HBO but is available on DVD.  Be forewarned, this movie is real and often not picture perfect.  Although the basis of the film is on a musical that the children develop and perform together, it has little focus on the specific performance and more to do with the families involved.  Grab your tissues, plug your ears for the foul language and strap in for an emotional roller coaster ride.  For Autism Awareness Month, this documentary is a way to enlighten those that don't know about the daily struggles families face or for families dealing with autism to know they aren't alone.



Elaine Hall, aka 'Coach E', developed 'The Miracle Project' as a way to join children with disabilities and arts, theater and music.  Elaine adopted her son from Russia when he was a toddler and soon after received the diagnosis of autism.  During this documentary we follow her son's story along with four other children and their parents.  These parents are candid in sharing raw emotions of how autism is influencing their life now and also their thoughts of the future for their children.  I found myself crying one moment and laughing the next.  It was an honor to be able to take a peek inside the daily struggles these families are experiencing.  "Prepare to be inspired" is the slogan for this movie and I think it is quite fitting. 

Coach E has also written a book about her journey with her son, 'Now I see the Moon', which is on my list to read!  She also gives good advice about what to do to help families with those on the spectrum; read some of her posts on her site: http://www.coacheonautism.com/

-Abby

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