Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Ben Marlene, Beatriz Baz, Kevin Davidson and the Voices, Lynn Keesecker, George Boyer
Director: Melody Gilbert
Studio: Repnet Llc Release Date: 05/08/2007
Strange look into a STRANGE World
jimmy_rants@yahoo | USA | 02/16/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I had heard about individuals who desired amputation of their owns limbs and wrote it off as urban legend or a rare occurance by the truly insane. There actually exists a small mostly online subculture of men who desire for one of their legs to be surgically removed, thus making them "whole".
I'm not sure if reality TV confrontation therapy would work with this crew, but it's not tried in this documentary. Instead the self-inflicted amputees and wannabes are allowed to speak unquestioned(many in their small screentime are able to sound completely rational and intelligent) about their desires or experiences to suffer a physical mutilation a huge percentage of people find horrifying.
That the director was able to find this small and odd minority ( and possible fetishists) is fascinating and the film editing and style are very decent. But little was done onscreen to dig a little deeper as to finding their inner motivations. That the director didn't pursue some crude aversion therapy or even ask tough questions about motives gives the viewer the impression that the filmaker sought a moral challenge here and chose to understand this obvious affliction as a "lifestyle choice" like tattooing or breast implants, or even worse, a disorder that is easier to "treat" (amputate a perfectly good limb?) than try to work out.Why did the director not do the tough but righteous task of finding an amputee who has suffered such challenges to tell these potential peg legs what obstacles they will face and how foolish they appear to most of us? And if the director added an "afterschool special-style" warning with an 800 number at the end where dopeheads/anorexics/gamblers/people-thinking-about-cutting-off-their-own-limbs can get help, I sure missed it.
I can't look at any elective or cosmetic surgery the same way after seeing "Whole". And I wonder out loud about the isolation and bizarre notion of self-guided independence in these subjects lives that leads them to believe this is a rational and later not a regrettable decision. It's a crazy world where people are too self-involved to call crazy people CRAZY."
I won't be Whole until I lose a limb.
Venice J. Rembold | TX United States | 04/04/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Filmmaker Melody Gilbert's documentary about people who feel an obsessive desire to be an amputee. In most cases in this documentary, it is the left leg these people from all over the world wish they could cut off, or get rid of through surgery. One physician in Scotland actually performed two of these unprecedented surgeries. Runs about an hour."