The Horse Boy

How far would you travel to heal someone you love? An intensely personal yet an epic spiritual journey, The Horse Boy follows one Texas couple and their autistic son as they trek on horseback through Outer Mongolia in a desperate attempt to treat his condition with shamanic healing. When 2-year-old Rowan was diagnosed with autism, Rupert Isaacson, a writer and former horse trainer, and his wife, Kristin Neff, a psychology professor, sought the best possible medical care for their son — but traditional therapies had little effect. Then they discovered that Rowan has a profound affinity for animals — particularly horses — and the family set off on a quest for a possible cure.

The Horse Boy is part travel adventure, part insight into shamanic tradition and part intimate look at the autistic mind. In telling one family’s extraordinary story, the film gives voice to the thousands who display amazing courage and creativity every day in the battle against the mysterious and heartbreaking epidemic. The film companion to Isaacson’s best-selling book of the same name and a festival favorite, the ravishing documentary odyssey gives insight into how, in life’s darkest moments, a gateway to joy and wonder can be found.

The Horse Boy does more than chronicle Rowan and his parents’ journey across the vast, wild landscape of Mongolia. It delves into the strange world of autism itself, the relationship between humans and animals and between different cultures and different ways of being (autistic vs. normal, or “neuro-typical”), and the nature of healing. Audiences hear the varied theories on autism from the experts in the field, well-known researchers of autism such as Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen of Cambridge University; Dr. Temple Grandin, recovered autist and professor of animal behavior at Colorado State University; and anthropologist and researcher Roy Richard Grinker of George Washington University. But above all, The Horse Boy tells the story of a couple that goes to the end of the earth to find a way into their son’s life.

Link: The Horse Boy: Official Movie Website

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