Learning Difficulty





Recommended by Title

Recommended by Disability

Limb & Spinal Conditions: Major Films   no photo.
TitleSuddenly (1996) (TV Film)
Alternative/Original Title
DisabilityLimb paraplegia
DirectorRobert Allan Ackerman
CastKirstie Alley Jason Beghe Jason Bernard
NotesAfter being injured while at a bus stop a waitress becomes a paraplegic. She forms a friendship with another para (who though disabled all the way through the film is played by an able-bodied actor). Kirsty Alley's character is set up as a lively gregarious waitress. Ready to go on holiday to Hawaii with her boyfriend. And she's shown as friendly to a street person, black and with an Alsatian dog. Note K.A. CO-produced this film. Waiting for a bus (this really makes her poor, working class) when the approaching bus loses control and piles into queue. K.A. is paralysed from waist down, boyfriend dumps her. Nice guy in wheelchair introduces himself. Of course it's O.K. if you're a guy in a wheelchair to approach a woman in a wheelchair on the street. Isn't it? But she rejects his overtures of help. Finds boyfriend who hasn't been to see her all the time she was in hospital is married. Goes on booze, gets robbed in street after flashing her welfare money in store. She has friends who stand by her but she puts them off. Then the street guy she was nice to asks her to look after his dog while he goes to hospital for checkup. Since he collapses outside her door we imagine that's the last she'll see of him and has got a dog for life. The dog gets her out and pulls her along in her chair lucky it wasn't a chiwowa (sic). The whole film revolves around K.A. with little interaction with others. Good note she does sleep with a pillow between her thighs. Though we don't see how she gets dressed which for once would be appropriate in a film. But we do see her attempting sex with the nice guy in the wheelchair. Impatient or whatever it fails, for once it looks like it's not the man's fault. After this she becomes more of a recluse and boozer. The dog is run over but he's O.K. (why, we could have had the dog in a wheelchair too?) But the street guy comes back for his dog (and from the dead) and she's left alone again. She ends up getting taken into hospital but the nice guy comes to see her and next thing she's staying at his place. This is infinitely better than her cheap box. It's by water (sea?) and looks comfortable and disability positive i.e. we're not going to give in to what has happened to us. The frumpish K.A. takes exercise, eats well and is rewarded with sex and happiness ever after. Not such a bad film and I'll go out on a limb to recommend it.

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