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Gleason

At age 34, former NFL player Steve Gleason is diagnosed with ALS and given a life expectancy of five years. He begins a video journal as a gift for his unborn son that turns into a chronicle of his determination to get his relationships in order, build a foundation to provide other ALS patients with purpose, and adapt to his declining physical condition while living life to the fullest.
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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

75

San Francisco Chronicle by

Ultimately, while Gleason can be tough to watch, it has a strong message about the value of relationships and how to spend a life doing meaningful work against great odds.
75

IndieWire by Eric Kohn

While fairly straightforward in its attempts to galvanize viewers around efforts to combat the disease, Gleason hits those familiar marks with superb aim.
100

Variety by Geoff Berkshire

Tweel masterfully assembles roughly four years of footage, much of it shot by Gleason himself, and the result is painfully raw at times but undeniably rewarding.
100

Wall Street Journal by Joe Morgenstern

Gleason is so powerful in its cumulative effect that it should be accompanied by a consumer advisory — something along the lines of “This documentary may cause sudden alterations of mood and attitude.”
80

The Hollywood Reporter by John DeFore

Focused much more intently on video journals Gleason made as his illness progressed, the film both documents his rapid physical decline and ponders the many existential issues it raises — especially for a married couple expecting their first child in a few months.
75

The A.V. Club by Katie Rife

He can afford the best treatments and technologies and — by the end — even to extend his life, because he’s a well-off former NFL player. Most patients don’t have these luxuries.
74

TheWrap by Michael Nordine

Clay Tweel’s Gleason documents the agony and the ecstasy of its subject’s life, and is similarly exceptional in its avoidance of the cliches so common among inspiring documentaries.
100

New Orleans Times-Picayune by Mike Scott

The deeply resonant Gleason isn't a football movie. Rather, it traffics in universal themes that effectively drill down to the very core of the human condition. As such, everybody has something to gain from what ends up being a multilayered mediation on life.

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