The Reason I Jump

The Reason I Jump
The Reason I Jump

Director: Jerry Rothwell

United Kingdom | 2020 | 82 min

Audience Award, World Documentary Competition – Sundance Film Festival

Impact Award – Vancouver International Film Festival

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Illuminating + Sensory + Profound

An illuminating journey into the world of non-verbal autism, The Reason I Jump is a documentary based on the worldwide bestselling book by a 13-year-old Japanese boy, Naoki Higashida. Translated into over 27 languages, the book was heralded as a groundbreaking insight into what it feels like to be autistic.


Director Jerry Rothwell uses translation as his jumping point, rooting the narrative to acclaimed novelist David Mitchell, who translated the original book into English in 2013. Mitchell, whose son is autistic, describes Higashida’s book as ”an envoy from another world … a kind of poetry.” Fusing Higashida’s revelatory insights with intimate portraits of five remarkable young people, the film unravels poetically, offering cinematic form to the dazzling sensory world of the individuals we meet.


The film offers audiences a multi-sensory experience, reminding us that the spoken word is one of just thousands of signifiers in the vast constellation of realities that make up lived experience.


Get access to an exclusive Q&A with your ticket:

Host Kathryn Marlow (Host of CBC All Points West) talks with director Jerry Rothwell