JCC film festival highlights special needs
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JCC film festival highlights special needs

ReelAbilities Film Festival

Wednesday, March 13, 7 p.m.

“Sons of the Stars”

(China, 90 minutes;
Director Michelle Chen Miao)

Zheng Zheng, a young mother of an autistic child, travels a great distance to look for her husband with her special-needs child in tow and finds herself alone in an enormous city with nothing but her wits and inner strength to guide her.

“Sensory Overload”

(USA; 3 minutes; Director Miguel Jiron)

This animation provides a glimpse into the sensory overload experienced by people with autism and how it intertwines in their everyday life.

Thursday, March 14, 7: 30 p.m.

“The Importance of Tying Your Own Shoes”

(Swedish; 100 minutes;
Director by Lena Koppel)

A young man named Alex gets a job as the leader of a local theater group for people with disabilities and his outlook begins to change as he comes to appreciate that everyone has his or her own talents that can continue to grow with opportunity and support.

“Autism in Love”

(USA; 9 minutes;
Director Michelle Friedline)

A dapper 50-year-old man with autism learns to suppress certain behaviors so he can embrace life more fully and he and his wife, nine years his senior, learn to share secrets and bond in ways that reveal the true meaning of unconditional love.

“Be My Brother”

(Australia; 8 minutes;
Director Genevive Clay)

A young man with Down Syndrome breaks down the barriers of social prejudice when his charm and charisma challenge the prejudices of a stranger at a bus stop.

Sunday, March 17, 7 p.m.

“Wampler’s Ascent”

(USA, 2012, 77 min;
Director: Jacques Spitzer)

Steve Wampler, who has cerebral palsy, does 20,000 pull-ups to climb the famous El Capitan Mountain in Yosemite – only 2-6 inches at a time. His wife and two children cheer him on from below, as do fans who have come to support his mission. Stephen Wampler and his family will join the audience for a conversation following the screening of the film.

“Dancing Outside the Box”

(USA; 15 minutes; Director David Block)

Wheelchair bound, able-bodied partners bring their worlds together on the dance floor, proving everyone can dance.

“Jazz Hand”

(USA; 3 minutes; Director Don Hertzfeldt)

Mary, a young girl who has attended hundreds of tap dance auditions, is going strong in an audition until her prosthetic hand, her well-kept secret, falls off.

All films are captioned and other accommodations, such as CART, ASL interpretation, and audio description, are available upon request.

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