A documentary directed by James Redford (son of Robert Redford) uses animation and live interviews to explore the complex world faced by those who have dyslexia. In the film titled The D Word: Understanding Dyslexia, the audience follows Dylan, a high school senior, through both his struggles in school and his preparations to attend college. Mixed in with Dylan’s story are testimonials from prominent figures in the business world (Richard Branson), politics (Gavin Newsom, Lt. Governor of California), and others who have overcome dyslexia to find success.
The skillful use of animation highlights the ways that dyslexia affects those who have it, while the interview aspect of the film illuminates ways people have found to cope with the learning disability. What makes this film stand out is its focus on the positive effects of dyslexia such as creativity and the ability to problem-solve. In The D Word: Understanding Dyslexia, two doctors from the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity also help to demystify this disability and give strategies for academic success.
The film premieres at the Sundance Film Festival this week. View the trailer here.