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Winner of the Directing Award at Sundance, this stirring documentary tells the story of Owen Suskind, a young man who developed autism as a child and was unable to speak until he and his family communicated by immersing themselves in the world of classic Disney animation. Inspired by the best-selling book by Owen’s father Ron, this film follows him at a critical juncture, as he graduates to adulthood and takes his first steps toward independence. Evocatively interweaving classic Disney scenes with Owen’s everyday life, the film explores how his empathy for characters like Simba and Ariel gave him a means to understand his feelings and interpret reality, revealing how stories help us persevere through hard times. Director: Roger Ross Williams. (US 2016) 91 min.

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