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The Gene Siskel Film Series – Swim Team Part of the Gene Siskel Film Center Series
What would you do if your community gave up on your child?
In New Jersey, the parents of a boy on the autism spectrum take matters into their own hands. They form a competitive swim team, recruiting diverse teens on the spectrum and training them with high expectations and zero pity.
SWIM TEAM chronicles the extraordinary rise of the Jersey Hammerheads, capturing a moving quest for inclusion, independence and a life that feels winning.
“Eye-opening, thoughtful, inspiring…” – Sheri Linden Hollywood Reporter
“…an exceptional documentary on what it means to come together for a common goal under extraordinary circumstances.” – Anne-Katrin Titze Eye For Film
“The breastroking, freestyling young athletes in Swim Team couldn’t be more different in terms of personality, drive, appeal and, of course, developmental challenges, and it gives this film from Lara Stolman its particular character, heart and verve.” – Robert AbeleLos Angeles Times
“Swim Team is a probing, honest, and uplifting look at the challenges that young autistic people and their families face as they “age out” of services after high school. It’s also a beautifully filmed and sensitively paced portrait of a group of autistic people of color who give their all to take their team to the state finals for a chance to swim at the Special Olympics. You will not soon forget these wonderful young swimmers, or the struggles of their parents as they refuse to allow their kids’ potential to be limited by society’s low expectations for their future.” – Steve Silberman Author. NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity
Winner of multiple awards, including:
Lighthouse International Film Festival
Monmouth Film Festival
Autfest International Film Festival
Best Documentary Over 60 Minutes
Picture This Film Festival
Best Feature Cinematography
Wales International Doc Fest
Best New Jersey Film
Monmouth Film Festival
Best Sports Documentary
Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
Festival International Du Film Sur Le Handicap
Human Spirit Award
Nashville Film Festival
Jury Prize for Ethos
Social Impact Media Awards
Winner – NJ Films
Montclair Film Festival
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