January 05, 2015

Review: The United States of Autism

I have Netflix, so I checked out The United States of Autism, a documentary by Richard Evert, the father of an autistic boy, who travelled the US speaking to families with autistic members.

There's a disclaimer at the beginning about how Evert promised not to censor any of the family interviews and that many viewpoints would be expressed. He leaves it up to the viewer to make up their own mind.

I think he really succeeded in presenting a wide range of families and viewpoints. I certainly didn't agree with some of them (there are some curebie anti-vax types included) but he really objectively gave everyone an equal voice. In the end, the documentary explores how American families are dealing with autism. Some had issues with insurance or finding care providers. Some felt their children's gifts were being ignored by society at large.

Evert spoke to both family members and Autistics of all ages. He visited Asian, black, interracial, single-parent, Latino, and Muslim families. He talked to activists and those just keeping to themselves. Most are just everyday Americans trying to do their best for their families.

If you're already in the autism community, you'll recognize some of the interviewees, like Sharon daVanport, Alex Plank and Raun Kaufman.

I think it was a very down-to-earth exploration of how different families were dealing with autism. If you have Netflix, it's easy to just click and check it out, otherwise it can be purchased through Amazon or iTunes.

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