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IF you were doing a research project on autism and wanted as many cases of autism to use for information and comparison, I would recommend this as a 2-Star movie worth the watching. For everyone else, it is pretty much of home-movie-quality, based on a father's belief in shaamans/spiritual leaders of long existing tribes. But it also mentions the diverse symptoms of autism and captures the agonizing and tortuous journey of autistic children and their parents.
"Horse Boy" shows the extent a family loves their autistic son. You will be surprised at their openness during the documentary. It is shot both here in the U.S. and Mongolia. This is not another "horse story". It is a story of the limits and triumphs of a families journey to treat their sons autism. A one of a kind movie, that really has you rooting for the family all the way!
An interesting delving into culture and challenges (physical, emotional, etc.) . I did find it odd that the couple was so mismatched - how can anyone not like horses as she says??? My BS detector detects some sugar coating of the marriage -- but it is a beautifully filmed film. Animal lovers will enjoy watching the interaction between Rowan and his animal buddies.
Did the shaman and animals heal Rowan?? Wife says no - Rupert says YES. Ah... some marriages are wasted on the wrong people :)
Such an amazing and unusual tale. The telling is amateurish, but there is tremendous human interest in this extreme story, not only of the family with a horrendous, seemingly unsolvable problem, but of the people and land of Mongolia.
This is a documentary, which is well done. It follows a mother, father, their son and guide and his son on a pretty amazing journey to Mongolia. Their quest is seeking an improvement in their son's autistic behaviors such as him not being able to embrace toilet training or social time with other children.
The parents' discoveries about each other, parenting, their son and Shaman healing are worth a watch in and unto themselves..
This story is an adventure that will most likely capture your heart and challenge your mind. The mother steps way outside her comfort zone to take a chance on a possibility that her son's life can be improved. The father demonstrates a deep love for his autistic son and frequently challenges himself on why he is doing things with and for his son. The guide and his son add a lovely note of normal to this magical quest.
I'm not sure how much editing took place, but what is shown is certainly interesting. It's unclear how much the trip had to do with the boy's progress, but it's very clear that much progress was made in a short time and that the parents seem very sincere and committed in their quest.
I watched this and Temple Grandin in succession - two true stories of people with autism. Temple is one of the experts who comments on autism in the special features section of The Horse Boy. Both movies illustrate an overwhelming commitment on the part of the parents and how little the 'experts' know about this condition.
An excellent documentary on a fathers' love for his son and the fathers' demonstration of having an open mind and heart to go across the world to have his son healed from a shaman and in the end the family heals.
So beautiful and so awe-inspiring. This has become one of my new favourite movies. Such a hope for a change in the way we view and treat those who are different from "the norm" and such a beautiful demonstration of the powers of non-Western methods of healing and treating. I hope to be able to watch this again and again, I don't believe I'll ever tire of it.
Convinced Shamanism has to be real? Absolutely certain it can't be? This documentary record of distraught parents trekking through Tibet with a tantrum-throwing autistic six-yer-old who can't be toilet-trained is riveting, whatever you believe.
Interesting doc/movie on a number of levels - some insight into autism, the horses and reindeer, shamen, and fabulous scenes from Outer Mongolia.
The extra segments offer some very good shots and scenes with the Mongolian guide and his son which were not used in the movie - worth watching.
The only downside for me was the father of the boy, Rupert Isaacson - I found he became very annoying after a while, a little too full of himself (in my opinion.)