ReelAbilities Film Festival Kicks Off, Runs March 9 – 16, 2013

Want to see a little touch of Hollywood right here in Cincinnati? The second annual ReelAbilities: Cincinnati Disabilities Film Festival offers that and more, starting with an ‘orange carpet’ premiere night, tonight –  Saturday, March 9 at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.

RAlogocaptionThe film festival itself runs from March 9 through the 16th with 10 screening events around Cincinnati, including the Cincinnati Art Museum, Children’s Hospital Medical Center, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, the Esquire and Kenwood theatres and the University of Cincinnati, with films for all ages and some events free. Tickets for other screenings, except for premiere night, are $10.

The premiere brings to town some of the nation’s best known actors and advocates for the disabled, including attorney Richard Bernstein, Ironman participant and 17-time marathoner, legally blind since birth; Larry Bissonnette, writer for the film about his life, “My Classic Life as an Artist: A Portrait of Larry Bissonnette” as well as the star of the film, “Wretches and Jabbers;” Paralympian April Kerley, holder of nine American swimming records and featured in the film, “Warrior Champions;” John Lawson, the first double hand amputee to be certified as an FAA private pilot and SCUBA instructor; humorist and motivational speaker David Roche and Kurt Yaeger, one of the recurring characters on the FX series, “Sons of Anarchy.”

The event is being produced locally by Visionaries & Voices and LADD and benefits other non-profits, including the Autism Society, Starfire Council of Greater Cincinnati, Paralyzed Veterans Racing, Greater Cincinnati Down Syndrome Association and Hamilton County Developmental Disability Services.

Watch the trailer:


Movies include:

  • “Shameless: The Art of Disability,” Premiere night, 6 p.m. Saturday, March 9, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
  • “Body and Soul,” 1 p.m. Sunday, March 10, Mayerson JCC
  • “Anita,” 7:30 p.m. Sunday, March 10, Kenwood Theatre
  • “Ben X,” 9:30 a.m. Monday, March 11, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center (Screening is for students and is free, but reservations required)
  • “Ocean Heaven,” 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 11, Kenwood Theatre
  • “Shameless: The Art of Disability,” 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, Esquire Theatre
  • “Mary & Max,” 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 13, Kenwood Theatre
  • “Praying With Lior,” 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 14, Children’s Hospital Medical Center Auditorium (free)
  • “Aphasia,” 1 p.m. Friday, March 15, University of Cincinnati Bearcat Cinema, Tangeman Hall (free)
  • “Warrior Champions, from Baghdad to Beijing,” 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 15, National Underground Railroad Freedom Center


For more information, visit


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  1. Blue Ash Mom says

    Ben X might be too heavy for some high schoolers. Check google for reviews. Lots on google on Praying with Lior as well.

    • Shannanb says

      Thanks for sharing! Sounds like some Googling might be a good idea. Thank you Blue Ash Mom!

  2. Shannan says

    We asked the folks at ReelAbilities and they said Ben x is for high schoolers and Praying with Lior is kid appropriate and free.