Watch The Lion's Mouth Opens putlocker
||IMDB Rating: 8.0/10 from votes
||Release: 18 January 2014 (USA) /
||Genre: Biography, Documentary, Short
||Director: Marianna Palka,
||Stars: Bryce Dallas Howard, Carly Ritter, Christian Williams, Jason Ritter, Marianna Palka, Mike Uppendahl, Moet Hashimoto, Seth Gabel
||Synopsis: A documentary on young actress, Marianna Palka, as she confronts her risk of Huntington's Disease.
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In a lot of ways, Marianna Palka is different from most people you
know. She is a director and actress, and moved to New York from
Scotland at age 18 with dreams of making films and less than $100 to
her name. She made those dreams come true, as a film she wrote,
directed and starred in premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Some
in Palka's close circle of friends are well-known actors and actresses,
like Jason Ritter and Bryce Dallas Howard.
There is one crucially important, life-defining way, however, in which
Palka desperately wants to be like everyone else. Like an estimated
200,000 Americans, Palka is at risk for Huntington disease (HD).
There's a 50-50 chance she inherited the disease from her father, who
started showing symptoms when Palka was eight years old. Others in
Palka's family have undergone presymptomatic genetic testing for the
disease, and will eventually develop the cognitive, emotional and
physical symptoms of this progressive, neurodegenerative disease for
which there is presently no cure.
In the permeating "The Lion's Mouth Opens," the Academy Award
shortlisted documentary directed by Lucy Walker, Palka and the audience
find out her medical fate.
"Getting a positive result is like a death sentence," Palka says in the
film. "And if you get the opposite, then you just get to be like
everyone else." In one of the most acclaimed short documentaries of the
year, the two-time Academy Award nominated Walker adeptly drops the
viewer off in Palka's apartment the night before she receives her
definitive genetic testing results. Thanks to Palka's amazing,
supportive and loving group of friends that come over for dinner, this
is perhaps the most comforting room that's also filled floor-to-ceiling
with cutting tension ever shown on screen. Her support system is
solidly in place, but it is Palka's anxious if not clearheaded bravery
that carries her and everyone else through that night and what is to
come the following day at UCLA Medical Center.
Palka is described by her friends and Walker as a brilliant person with
an incredible mind, which comes across in the film through her subdued
sense of humor and ability to glide from one emotion to the next;
worry, to assuredness, to comfort, to denial. It all feels genuinely
Marianna, and it all comes plainly through the screen and into the
The simplicity of the way Walker made "The Lion's Mouth Opens" (title
taken from a line in a Bob Dylan poem about Woody Guthrie that becomes
central to the film) presents what unfolds as it should be: raw, honest
and without pretense. A single camera captures Palka's journey. There
is some touching interview footage with Palka's mother and Ritter, but
there is no dramatic music or narrators. There's just life, and the
most important moment in one person's life at that.
This film succeeds at opening viewers' eyes to a moment of revelation
few will ever face or even fully understand (Palka's results are
revealed in the film, but not in this review). Thanks to Palka's
courage and openness, the viewer is left jolted, pulse quickened, but
with a heart more open than the agape jaws of any frighteningly
foreboding lion's mouth.
In a 28-minute documentary, you might expect to be plucked out of what
has just unfolded just as easily as you were dropped in, but due to
"The Lion's Mouth Opens" commanding impact, you are likely to be
unready and unwilling to detach yourself. In that case, simply telling
someone about HD and what you saw in this remarkable film goes a long
way to spread awareness. It's an incredible gift to the HD community
that Palka and Walker are using Palka's story to make a difference by
shining a spotlight on this disease and the lives it impacts.
(adapted from review originally written by the author for University of
Iowa Carver College of Medicine website)
Tags for The Lion's Mouth Opens Full Movie
Bryce Dallas Howard
, Carly Ritter
, Christian Williams
, Jason Ritter
, Marianna Palka
, Mike Uppendahl
, Moet Hashimoto
, Seth Gabel
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