Synopsis by Mark Deming
Five young people battle incurable disease as their families deal with their physical and emotional struggles in this powerful documentary from filmmakers Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert. A Lion in the House was largely filmed on Ward 5A of Cincinnati Children's Hospital, a wing devoted to children with cancer and related illnesses. The film focuses on five youngsters undergoing treatment there -- Justin Ashcraft, an 18-year-old who has been living with leukemia since age eight; Al Fields, an 11-year-old non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patient; seven-year-old Alex Lougheed, also with leukemia; a third leukemia patient, nine-year-old Jen Moore; and Tim Woods, a 15-year-old boy with Hodgkin's lymphoma. As the children deal with the rigors and treatment and the toll their illnesses take on their bodies, they also wrestle with their need to be kids and navigate the tricky roads of growing up, while their families and physicians sometimes have to confront the fact that the children may not survive their treatment. Produced for broadcast on public television, A Lion in the House was screened as part of the 2006 Sundance Film Festival.
cancer, child, oncology, pediatrics