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The Private Worlds of Parents Raising Children Radically Different From Themselves

Sundance Selects and Participant Media present Far from the Tree: A Film by Rachel Dretzin. Opening in theaters and VOD July 20, 2018.

By Ashley Fetters

To what extent should parents be held responsible for who their children grow up to be? That’s the question raised by the new documentary Far from the Tree, which explores the lives of children who are somehow radically different from their parents. … Andrew Solomon’s 2012 nonfiction book of the same name … aims to understand how society decides which hereditary traits and conditions are considered illnesses and which are considered identities. The film, directed by Rachel Dretzin, tightens its focus to the home.

… The film itself doesn’t place blame or responsibility on parents for any of their children’s conditions, but it nonetheless offers absolution, in the form of showing the incredible lengths these parents go to learn about, connect with, and best serve their sons and daughters.

… In the opening minutes of Far From the Tree, Solomon says, “In telling these stories, I was investigating the very nature of family itself.” Emphasis, it seems, on nature.

(To read the full review, please visit The Atlantic.)