As I was experimenting with finger weaving, I had the opportunity to take in a great Indian movie about dyslexia.
Like Stars On Earth is the story of a little boy, Ishaan, in India who was struggling badly enough in the local school that his parents sent him away to a boarding school in the hopes that stricter discipline would make him straighten up.
The increased stress and structure only broke him down to the point of shutting down, and becoming completely uncommunicative. It wasn’t until an unconventional teacher, who was dyslexic himself, took over their art class that the boy’s problem was realized. Of course, things gradually began turning around from there.
This movie was incredibly well done. The writers did so much research with families from all over and with at least two different schools as they were putting the script together. Even without looking at the thank yous and history, you could tell from the way the student, his family and his teachers reacted.
It really captured the entire experience. Most of the documentaries and movies I see about dyslexia focus so tightly on the student that the rest of the players get lost. It is very important that those of us with dyslexia get our personal stories told, but there’s so much more to it.
Parenting a child who just doesn’t seem like they’re trying hard enough is frustrating. It’s also frustrating to teach them. Fear enters the equation for the family, especially when depression starts to sink in.
This movie really illustrated all of that brilliantly. It also touched on some of the educational problems in India when it comes to the segregation between “normal” kids and “special” kids, as well as the stigmas associated with the issue.
It was a real tear-jerker for me, since so many of the events struck so close to home for me.
Since it’s partially in Hindi, make sure you have your subtitles on or select the dubbed option. It drives me nuts when the peoples’ mouths don’t match exactly with what they’re saying, so I usually just opt for subtitles.
That reminds me, they also touched upon the fact that Ishaan was learning how to read and write two extremely different languages at the same time – English and Hindi.
Absolutely wonderful movie. I’d highly suggest it.