Parents' Guide to

Boy Interrupted

By Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Haunting suicide/depression docu; watch with your teens.

Movie NR 2009 92 minutes
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Boy Interrupted is less educational than it is a cathartic healing experience for the Perry family, who made the film as a way to find some meaning behind Evan's death. Although medical professionals are interviewed, the discussions about Evan, his illness, and his death aren't intended to offer substantial clinical information but rather to show the depths to which a child suffering from bipolar disorder can sink -- and the physical and emotional toll that suffering can take on the people around him or her.

The documentary's intensely personal nature and powerful images -- including footage of a very young Evan in the throes of a manic depressive state -- make it very difficult to watch. But, to its credit, the film isn't exploitative. Instead, it succeeds in putting a very human and vulnerable face on bipolar disorder and offers concrete, haunting evidence of what this illness is really about.

Movie Details

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