Roger Ross Williams, 91 min, Documentary, English, USA, 2016
“Life, Animated” is the inspirational story of Owen Suskind, a young man who was unable to speak as a child until he and his family discovered a unique way to communicate by immersing themselves in the world of classic Disney animated films. This emotional coming-of-age story follows Owen as he graduates to adulthood and takes his first steps towards independence. The subject of his father Ron Suskind’s New York Times bestseller, Owen was a thriving three-year old who suddenly and inexplicably went silent – and for years after remained unable to connect with other people. Over time, he finds in Disney animation films a path to language and useful tools to help him understand complex social cues and to re-connect with the world around him.
The film was nominated for the Academy Awards for Best Feature Documentary. It has won many awards like the Directing Award at Sundance International Film Festival, the Special Achievement Award at the Annie Awards, the Audience Award at San Francisco International Film Festival, the National Board of Review Awards for Top Five Documentaries, the Truly Moving Picture Award at Heartland Film Festival and the Audience Award at Full Frame Documentary Film Festival.