King Gimp (1999)

 |  Documentary, Short
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Credited cast:
Dan Keplinger ...
Himself - King Gimp


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I laughed, I cried, I saw myself

I first saw this documentary short (which won an Academy Award last year) about ten days ago. I admit upfront a bias, as, like the artist who is the focus of the piece, I have Cerebral Palsy. Although I walk with crutches and my speech is clearer than his, much of what he says and much of his experience in lfe is similar to my own and, I suspect, for many of those who are disabled as well. Although much is made of his disability, much is also made of his art as well and they didn't try to treat him as though he were a dancing bear. It's a powerful affecting film and it haunts me still and will for the rest of my days. It is difficult to be disabled and I'm not talking about physical barriers, but rather the preconceptions people in general have about the disabled. The title King Gimp is apparently a name he was called when he was younger that he adopted for his own use. Althougher he will probably never see these words, I salute him and thank him for telling so much about his life (figuratively bleeding on camera at times that my heart clenches even now, thinking about his words). I am purposely leaving his name out because his story is the story of so many that it does what every artist tries to do at one time or another-create an Everyman. Bravo to everyone involved in this project.

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