BBC iPlayer: The Diving Bell And The Butterfly (2007)

on Saturday, July 10, 2010
Watch until Sun 11th July, 11.59pm (UK users only)

Director: Julian Schnabel
Cast: Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seigner, Max Von Sydow

The Diving Bell And The Butterfly (BBC iPlayer)
SYNOPSIS: Poignant drama telling the real-life story of a man left paralysed in the prime of his life who went on to show incredible reserves of spiritual strength to author his memoirs. The editor of France's Elle magazine, Jean-Dominique Bauby was struck down in his 40s by a stroke that left him unable to move a muscle, yet did not affect his mental reflexes. He went on to write his autobiography just by blinking patterns - the only physical activity he could still perform - which followed an alphabetical code. (

'The Diving Bell And The Butterfly' has been widely acclaimed, including four Oscar nominations, and all the more so due to its basis in reality. As it happens, this article demonstrates that the film takes significant liberties with the truth. But artistic licence, right? And certainly those issues don't detract from the plaudits received for its cinematography and editing. As Beth Arnold wrote in her Salon article, "in the end, 'The Diving Bell And The Butterfly' is a beautiful film."

Act quickly, the film's only on the BBC website until tomorrow evening.

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