Mission To Lars (2013)
Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 14
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 1
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Critic Reviews: 2
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 0
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Kate and Will Spicer's brother, Tom, has Fragile X Syndrome, the most common form of inherited learning disability. He is also a massive fan of Lars Ulrich from Metallica. They made a promise to Tom that they would get him to meet Lars. Tom's dream is their promise. Together they went on a Mission to Lars.
Spicer and Moore - Official Site
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It will not teach you very much about either autism or Metallica, but you will leave the theater smiling.
The literal and emotional voyage that gives this sweet, touching and often funny doc its shape resists any temptation to overegg the self-discovery pudding.
Ultimately this is a film about overcoming adversity, facing your fears, family bonding and the power of music to reach anybody and everybody.
The film, which plays a little like a real-life Rain Man, may be a bit rough around the edges but that only adds to its charm. Kate and Will show their relationship with their brother in all its messiness.
Never mind the bickering and cajoling: this is a lovely, generous chronicle of a lovely, generous gesture.
You'll cry a bit come the tense, touching climax - then punch the air with joy.
The movie it brought to my mind (and compares favourably with) is Ira Wohl's equally personal, wonderfully inspiring Best Boy, which won an Oscar for best documentary in 1979.
Admirable cause, amateurish film, although Ulrich comes out of it smelling sweet.
This is no masterpiece but worth seeing for the way it treats its subject with unpatronising sympathy.
The peripheral interviews with the extended Spicer family are as compelling as the central quest; this is a film with rare honesty and nuance in a field that frequently feels queasy.
More about musical obsession than the nuts and bolts of autism, but very sweet all the same.
Not only is this documentary warm-hearted and thoroughly entertaining, but it has a lot to teach us about how families can rise to the challenge of mental disability.
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