On November 15, 2013, the world came together to grant one 5-year-old leukemia patient his wish to be Batman for a day. "Batkid Begins" looks at why and how this phenomenon took place, becoming one of the biggest "good news" stories of all time.
On November 15, 2013, I got a wonderful birthday present. I followed a link to a story about a child's Make-A-Wish request being fulfilled, and 20, 000 strangers participating to cheer him on. And, then, thousands more around the world touched by it and stopped to thank a young boy who wanted to be a hero, just for one day. How appropriate then, we hear a choral rendition of David Bowie's "Heroes," at the beginning of this documentary. Cancer is a harsh disease for anyone; but especially for children. These are some of the most vulnerable people, with developing immune systems. They have to turn into fighters to beat the disease. This film tells the story of one of these brave little warriors.
Miles Scott was diagnosed with leukemia at age 18 months. 18 months! He finished his treatment in the year he turned 5. That's a long battle, for anyone. Along the way, he was introduced to the Make-A-Wish foundation, which grants wishes to kids fighting cancer, in the hopes of giving them a back a piece of their lost childhood. Miles wanted to be a superhero; he wanted to be Batman. Simple enough. Then, people took inspiration and the idea grew from a simple day dressing up and doing some superheroic stuff into a city stopping for a day to cheer on a brave little kid, whose wish was to portray someone who brings justice into the world.
The story is amazing and the people involved even moreso. We meet Eric Johnston, who would be Batman to Miles' Batkid. Eric had worked with Make-A Wish before, helping a child develop a video game about fighting cancer, for other kids facing the same battle. Eric and the young man were recognized for their selfless act by the Dalai Lama. You see that same commitment from EJ, here, along with his wife and friends, the volunteers at Make-A-Wish and thousands of ordinary people, who were touched by the idea of helping a child play makebelieve. They got to be kids again, and see the world with clarity and bring some kindness back into it. All were heroes that day.
The film captures everything wonderfully and will have you in tears of joy, constantly. It's a heartwarming story that a few cynics have tried to tear apart; but, its message is beyond that. Watch the film and take inspiration. Become a hero for someone else. Take a moment and extend a kind hand to someone in need. remember what childhood was like, when you did everything with enthusiasm and passion. This film makes you want to go out and make the world a better place. We could use a bit of that.
Well done, Caped Crusader, and all of those who helped along the way.
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