Oliver Sacks

Awakenings

Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images

Neurologist Dr. Oliver Sacks, author of 'Awakenings.' Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images

I remember the first time I saw the movie Awakenings. I was living at Jeff Street Baptist Center and working with a community of inner-city teenagers from the Clarksdale housing projects in Louisville, Ky. 

Monday nights were Dollar Movie Nights for us and we would load up in our orange van (affectionately called The Great Pumpkin) and head out to the theater. On that Monday night I chose Awakenings as our movie of the week, hoping that my kids would identify with the 'helping each other overcome' theme in the story. My dream was deferred. They hated it! 

Within 15 minutes of the start of the movie they were throwing popcorn at the screen. We got up and changed theaters to something faster paced with more action. I had to promise to check my movie choices with them before they agreed to go with me again.

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