The Reason I Jump

1hr 22mins
Directed by
Jerry Rothwell

Through our Virtual Screening Room, you can rent films curated by the Coolidge team, while helping to support the Coolidge during this unprecedented time.

Based on the best-selling book by Naoki Higashida, The Reason I Jump is an immersive cinematic exploration of neurodiversity through the experiences of nonspeaking autistic people from around the world. The film blends Higashida's revelatory insights into autism, written when he was just 13, with intimate portraits of five remarkable young people. It opens a window for audiences into an intense and overwhelming, but often joyful, sensory universe.

Moments in the lives of each of the characters are linked by the journey of a young Japanese boy through an epic landscape; narrated passages from Naoki’s writing reflect on what his autism means to him and others, how his perception of the world differs, and why he acts in the way he does: the reason he jumps. The film distills these elements into a sensually rich tapestry that leads us to Naoki’s core message: not being able to speak does not mean there is nothing to say.

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Plus, filmmaker Jerry Rothwell and subjects Donna Budway, Emma Budway, Bertra McGann, and Ben McGann joined us for a for a livestreamed PANORAMA discussion moderated by Katelyn Flint, reporter/anchor NBC 10 Boston and NECN:

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Review Text

This is a wondrous work... that enlightens and informs but that is also ravishing to behold.

Review Author
Leslie Felperin
Review Publication
The Hollywood Reporter
Review Text

An inventive, sensuous documentary worthy of its source. This compassionate, creative documentary will open ears and eyes in equal measure. As emotionally piercing as it is beautiful to behold.

Review Author
Guy Lodge
Review Publication
Review Text

A profound and moving experience.

Review Author
Matt Cipolla
Review Publication
The Film Stage

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