• Starring: Lior Liebling
  • Written By: Ilana Trachtman
  • Distributed By: First Run Features
  • Country: United Kingdom
  • Language: English

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Praying With Lior

Jewish | 2008 | 87 min.
Directed by: Ilana Trachtman

Lior Liebling, “the little rebbe”, has Down syndrome, and has spent his entire life praying with utter abandon. Is he a "spiritual genius" as many around him say? Or simply the vessel that contains everyone's unfulfilled wishes and expectations? Lior - whose name means "my light" - lost his mother at age six, and her words and spirit hover over the film. While everyone agrees Lior is closer to God, he's also a burden, a best friend, an inspiration, and an embarrassment, depending on which family member is speaking. As Lior approaches Bar Mitzvah, the Jewish coming-of-age ceremony different characters provides a window into life spent "praying with Lior." The movie poses difficult questions such as what is "disability" and who really talks to God? Told with intimacy and humor, PRAYING WITH LIOR is a family story, a story of triumph and grief, but most of all, a story infused with divine inspiration.



Critical Acclaim

"[Director Ilana] Trachtman doesn't downplay the challenges of a family with a Down syndrome child, even one as high-functioning as Lior."

-Maureen M. Hart, Chicago Tribune

"Charming as Lior is, this triumphant little movie leaps from good to great by exploring the Liebling family dynamic."

-Rachel Beckman, Washington Post

"If you can watch Praying With Lior without shedding a tear, it's time for an emotional checkup."

-John P. McCarthy, Boxoffice Magazine

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