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Documentary, 2006, 95 min.

In TV shows like Jackass, dangerous behaviour is funny and tough. But an estimated 500 to 700 Dutch youngsters between 15 and 20 annually lapse into a coma, often as a result of reckless behaviour. In his documentary, director René Roelofs shows the hard reality of a coma, contrasting sharply with the myth Hollywood movies present. Like the Leijpark Rehabilitation Centre keeps saying to patients' relatives: no matter what, they will come out of it impaired.
Roelofs follows the intensive treatment of Mario and Marc, who have an awake-sleep rhythm, but other than that are not conscious of anything. By stimulating them by talking to them, with odours, noises and pain stimuli, they try to reactivate their cerebral functions. Whether it works and where the patient's ceiling is, is unpredictable. The patients' movingly candid loved ones cling, sometimes against their better judgement, to every reaction they perceive.





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