Oliver Sacks: His Own Life

Loading Events
September 21 September 22

Oliver Sacks: His Own Life

Watch the Trailer
This event has passed.

About the event


September 21
September 22
Event Category:


Documentary Feature
Running Time
111 min
General Admission $12
Open to PA, NJ, & DE residents only
Streaming On Demand for 48 hours
Genre: Documentary Feature
Country: USA
Year: 2019
Running Time: 111 min
Language: English

Directed by Ric Burns

Philadelphia Premiere
Covid won’t take Oliver Sacks down! Due to the pandemic, GPJFF was forced to cancel last spring’s Lindy CineMondays series, which OLIVER SACKS: HIS OWN LIFE was set to premiere at. We will screen this extraordinary film digitally instead on our virtual platform for two days, September 21-22.

Oliver Sacks (1933 – 2015) was an empathetic outsider whose life struggles and love of science led him to make significant breakthroughs in how the medical community treats those with neurological disorders today. His tale of perseverance over chaos and journey to redemption is more than a portrait of a brilliant mind: it is an elegy to anyone who knows what it is like to have stared at the abyss for far too long. Revealing intimate details of his battles with drug addiction, homophobia, and a medical establishment that refused to recognize his legitimacy until decades after the fact, in OLIVER SACKS: HIS OWN LIFE, Sacks does not shy away from exploring the sacred demons that drove his excellence.

Fans of Sacks’ literary canon or articles in The New Yorker, as well as those familiar with his work through Penny Marshall’s hit film, Awakenings (1990), will appreciate the space director Ric Burns bids the neurologist to speak frankly about his fears, failures, and achievements, not to mention the doc’s plethora of interviews with illustrious practitioners, colleagues, patients, and lifelong friends. Meanwhile, those who have never heard of the American icon may use the film as a comprehensive primer on Dr. Sacks’ innovative and unorthodox contributions as a clinical physician, neuroscientist, storyteller, and observer of human nature.

Official Selection:

  • AFI Fest
  • Atlanta Jewish Film Festival
  • Hamptons International Film Festival
  • New York Film Festival
  • San Francisco Jewish Film Festival
  • Telluride Film Festival


  • Audience Award for Best Documentary – Hamptons International Film Festival


  • “A sharp tribute to a healer who almost failed to heal himself…..One of the surprising and moving lessons of this revealing film is how often the most gifted people are unappreciated.” (Stephen Farber, The Hollywood Reporter)
  • “A tender and thrilling look… A portrait at once tender and thrilling, a movie that presents us with a man who led an eccentrically defiant, at times reckless existence that was the furthest thing from cunningly planned…What he saw is that we were all, in our ways, afflicted and all unique. And therefore all extraordinary.” (Owen Gleiberman, Variety)

Streaming September 21-22

PLEASE NOTE: Accessible to Residents of PA, NJ & DE Only
Ticket buyers will receive a private link to the film after purchase which will activate September 21.

Upcoming Events

December 07, 2020
Go to Top