The Film

"Intimate documentary examining a normal-but-remarkable man and wife's handling of his fatal disease ranks among the year's most moving films."
The Hollywood Reporter (more reactions here)

I AM BREATHING reminds us what it is to be alive – a tale of fun and laughs with a smattering of upset and devastation.

Within a year, Neil Platt goes from being a healthy 30-something British bloke with a great sense of humour to becoming completely paralysed from the neck down, thanks to the devastating illness he has inherited – known as ALS, MND, or Lou Gehrig's Disease. As his body gets weaker, his perspective on life changes. His humour remains, but new wisdom emerges:

"It's amazing how adaptable we are when we have to be.
It's what separates us and defines us as human beings."

Knowing he only has a few months left to live, and while he still has the ability to speak, Neil puts together a letter and memory box for his baby son Oscar and communicates his experience and thoughts about life in a blog – and in this film which he was determined to make. The directness of his communication mingles with images of the sensory details of a life well lived, and makes us revalue the ordinary.     

His blog posts form the film’s narration as he tells his own story through memories and impressions of his life – the sheer joy of falling in love, of partying with his mates, of fast motorbike rides. Through his determination to share his final journey, he makes us ask questions about our own lives.  

The film is 73 minutes long.

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Showing 81 reactions


commented 2015-04-09 04:40:27 +0100
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commented 2015-04-09 03:33:26 +0100
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posted about this on Facebook 2015-03-15 08:35:25 +0000
The thin space between life and death. 'Among the year's most moving films' (@thr). Watch it online or on the big screen
commented 2015-03-14 17:12:38 +0000
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commented 2015-03-05 02:13:32 +0000
The thin space between life and death. ‘Among the year’s most moving films’ (@thr). Watch it online or on the big screen http://bit.ly/1B8BoYb via @breathingfilm
commented 2015-03-04 18:39:51 +0000
The thin space between life and death. ‘Among the year’s most moving films’ (@thr). Watch it online or on the big screen http://bit.ly/1CwXAya via @breathingfilm
commented 2015-02-21 19:33:59 +0000
The thin space between life and death. ‘Among the year’s most moving films’ (@thr). Watch it online or on the big screen http://bit.ly/1B19Ntk via @breathingfilm
commented 2015-02-15 00:01:51 +0000
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commented 2015-02-09 15:15:59 +0000
The thin space between life and death. ‘Among the year’s most moving films’ (@thr). Watch it online or on the big screen http://bit.ly/167e1mh via @breathingfilm
commented 2015-02-03 06:45:11 +0000
That’s just awesome to bring people towards life which are effected by the fetal disease and have filled there life with the depression and sadness. Inspiring people specially when you are effecting with the same situation is one of the most amazing and difficult job to be done. Being a motorcycle rider i can imagine that what joys and happiness are part of life; Taking over the disease is better way to handle it.
http://www.emotorcyclesuit.com/
commented 2015-01-07 00:23:57 +0000
i have been diagnosed with als (since dec 2012) and i can’t get my head wrapped around this. always been into lots of sports and healthy eating. why me? i haven’t seen the film & don’t know if i should. i feel so sad for younger people that haven’t had a chance yet. i’ve raised two brilliant kids, traveled around europe & done some neat stuff so i guess i’m thankful, but i don’t want to die like this. i’ll keep fighting though. love to you all from wisconsin, usa.
commented 2015-01-05 13:18:35 +0000
As Emilly’s post below seems to originate from Nigeria rather than Ireland, we’re deleting it…
commented 2014-11-02 23:33:50 +0000
[hoax post removed by admin]
followed this page 2014-09-15 16:12:17 +0100
commented 2014-09-09 01:26:37 +0100
What a remarkable, brave and generous man and family. To allow us into the reality of this, their most challenging of times. To do so openly, honestly, with integrity, courage and humour is remarkable. I genuinely feel privileged to have been able to be a part of this family’s journey. With huge love and respect. Thank you
commented 2014-08-22 23:43:29 +0100
Hoy hemos hablado de esta película en nuestra clase de meditación. El ejemplo de Neil y Lousie son una inspiración para todos.

Cómo damos por hecho algo tan frágil como la salud cuando en realidad no somos nada. Es importante vivir la vida con plena consciencia, que no llegar a la muerte y descubrir que no hemos vivido.
commented 2014-06-10 22:20:51 +0100
I am so grateful to have had the chance to learn about Neil’s story. All that I needed was someone helping me understanding. Understanding the pain, the love, the fears, the falls.

This movie made me feel so close to my dad, it helped me seeing things with his eyes, his thoughts, the thoughts he never wanted to share, keeping the pain within. What I have learned from all that happened, this tsunami of tears, questions unsolved, failed escapes and lost battles and inconsolable falls, is that it is true, unless you have been through the same hell you can not understand.

But you can try, you can try to give all the love you have, even when you are tempted to put all your energies in a fight against it, give love. If I could turn back time to when my dad was still here I would not waste time with anger, I would carry on, giving love.

This movie is hope, is light, is poetry, is love.

If there’s no cure, there is hope. MND is a big monster, but each little hand, each voice, each prayer, each thought is part of the tight that will take all the pain away once all that will be left will be love.

Thank you for the incredible work, passion and soul that you have put in the movie.

I want to open my little window and let the summer breeze grow, whisper and then turn everything in a new sky free of all the dark clouds that changed forever my world.
commented 2014-06-03 06:04:42 +0100
I haven’t had time to screen the film yet, but will do so tomorrow. Will comment on the film afterward. I am undecided as to whether my husband, who has ALS, should watch it. We’ll see! In any case, thanks to all of you who are bringing the film about this horrible disease to the public so that anyone who sees it can have some understanding as to how it ravages the body of a patient without mercy!! Hopefully, this film will lead to demands for research for Motor Neuron Disease, and perhaps a cure. Thank you.
commented 2014-06-01 23:56:17 +0100
After having Neil’s Documentary recorded for months, finally found time & courage to watch his moving blog of life with MND, I pretty much cried through the entire documentary as brought back the memories of my gorgeous Dad who passed nearly 3 years ago after being diagnosed for only 7 months.
The strength, love and bravery Neil & his lovely wife portrayed was so moving and showed what living with MND everyday is like, how the disease affects everyone.
Neil has raised the profile of a disease that needs a cure, I’m so glad I finally watched it, and will continue my personal Awareness battle & Fund raising with MND Awareness for my Dad, Neil & every one that’s diagnosed with this heartbreaking disease. One day research will find a cure .
Kerrie @ MND AWARENESS X
commented 2014-05-10 13:39:18 +0100
Humbling too see the support, don’t think Im reading to watch it yet though. just lost my nan to this horrible disease in ALS form last week and we lost my great nan in 1992 to the Bulba form, so really its a fearful partially possible reality for me. Really hope awareness an try find a cure or some relief for sufferers in the future.
commented 2014-05-05 07:15:32 +0100
I haven’t watched this yet but am going to, lost my Dad last year to this awful disease, he was 80 when diagnosed so in one way “lucky” he had a long and fulfilling life but in another, how devastating to finish your life that way xx
commented 2014-04-17 00:08:42 +0100
My grandad died of motor neurones in 1987. I have two memories of him one when he saved me after a reprimand for touching something I shouldn’t and the second when he lost his temper at me aged 7 because I couldn’t understand what he was saying to me. Thank you for reminding me he was a sane mind trapped inside an insane body. Xx
commented 2014-03-26 03:17:03 +0000
Good job man. Having seen it a second time it didn’t get any easier. The old grainy memory like footage worked wonderfully and that near-last scene with his wife on the bed? That managed to capture love and death in one shot.
commented 2013-12-23 15:54:33 +0000
Loved the film even though it was so heartbreaking to watch. We lost my aunt to ALS at the age of 47. My thoughts are with Louise & Oscar xxx
commented 2013-12-07 22:31:57 +0000
Thank you – Neil, Louise and Oscar – for sharing this most precious time that can help spread the word about MND. Your strength and love shines through. I hope you are able to look back with more happiness than sadness, despite what this cruel disease has done. X
commented 2013-12-05 14:03:05 +0000
I have just watched this beautiful film with tears streaming down my face. The strength of Neil and his wife, Louise astounded me. Thank you for sharing your story to increase the awareness of MND.
commented 2013-11-28 18:32:02 +0000
My partner Susan (50)has recently been diagnosed with MND (June 2013) and watching Neil’s film really moved me, how is it in this day and age we can’t find a cure to these horrible diseases its good bring this awareness to people who don’t know or are not aware, thank you Neil and his Lovely Family for sharing their story. Keep fighting lets get a cure for this horrible disease
commented 2013-11-25 01:03:46 +0000
I sadly lost my mother to MND 11 years ago, it is a terrible disease for the person with it but also having to watch your loved one suffer killed me inside, my thoughts and prayers to Neil and his family, so sad, brings back bad memories but has to be shown to raise awareness of the condition.
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