The Horse Boy
Time Out New York Project: Issue #731, October 1-7, 2009
Dir. Michel O. Scott. 2009. N/R. 93mins. Documentary.
Rowan Isaacson is an autistic child whose parents take him on a journey through Mongolia to visit with a variety of shamans. The hope is less for a cure than for a balancing out of the child’s disruptive behavior, which the presence of horses (a Mongolian spiritualist staple) tends to alleviate. The Horse Boy comes off as both an edifying work of advocacy and an invasive home movie. Mostly, as with the thematically comparable (and superior) doc Praying with Lior, the film gets by on the sheer adorableness of its subject.—Keith Uhlich