Weirded Out and Blown Away (1986) by Sharon Greytak

Sunday, February 15, 1987, 8:00 pm

Weirded Out in Society

Images of the Disabled in Film


800 Chestnut Street

San Francisco, CA, 94133

Tonight’s program contrasts two remarkable films which confront the viewer with the struggles and vulnerabilities of one of society’s least understood minorities, the physically disabled. Sharon Greytak’s Weirded Out and Blown Away is a powerful group portrait of 5 disabled young people, an actor, psychotherapist, filmmaker (Greytak herself), painter, and writer. Without attempting to generate sympathy, the film offers insight into the personal and social relationships of men and women who live with handicapped conditions. It challenges the Public’s perception of them as either weaker or more courageous than the non-disabled. Tod Browning’s Freaks was severely cut or banned for many years because of his use of disfigured circus performers as actors within a dark Grand Guignol melodrama. Browning’s film transcends its exploitative roots and reveals his ‘actors’ to be sensitive and intensely human characters.

Films: Weirded Out and Blown Away (1986) by Sharon Greytak; Freaks (1932) by Tod Browning.