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Facing Death: Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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Product Details

  • Actors: Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
  • Directors: Stefan Haupt
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • DVD Release Date: November 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 98 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000VAHR6E
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,793 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross devoted her life to death and dying and achieved worldwide fame in the process. Through her strong commitment to the subject, she has done much to de-stigmatize dying and to draw attention to the treatment of the terminally ill.

Her story is a remarkable one. Born in Zurich in 1926 as a 2-pound triplet, she studied medicine in defiance of her parents' wishes and struggled for recognition as a psychiatrist in the United States. In 1969 she achieved international fame through her work with terminally ill patients in Chicago and her book 'On Death and Dying'. This initial success was followed by countless workshops and lecture tours around the world and the establishment of a healing center in Virginia, which was destroyed by arsonists in 1994. Since that time, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross suffered a series of strokes and lived secluded in the desert outside Phoenix, Arizona.

This remarkably intimate film was made when Kübler-Ross awaited her own death - on the verge of the transition she researched so passionately. Conversations with Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in Arizona form the core of the film. She looks back on her life, describes her childhood and her work, and explains how she herself faces aging and impending death. Interviews with her sisters, friends, and colleagues, as well as extensive archival material provide a comprehensive look into the life and work of this extraordinary woman.


An excellent resource and valuable document. --The Bulletin of the History of Medicine

The foremost authority in the field of death, dying and transition...it might well be said she invented the field. --Health World Online

A powerful and thoughtful film. Recommended! --Video Librarian

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Alan W. Petrucelli on January 23, 2008
When people were whispering the "D" world, Kubler-Ross was studying, exploring and writing about it. She became world famous for her work with terminally ill patients and her landmark 1969 book On Death an Dying, which detailed the five stages of death and dying. She lectured and gave countless workshops, even establishing a healing center in Virginia which was destroyed by arsonists in 1994. After suffering a series of strokes, she lived in seclusion outside Phoenix; it was during this time, when she awaited her own death, that this documentary was made. The film's strength is steeped in its unflinching honesty; her admirers are here as well as her detractors, her successes as well as her failures. Conversations with Kubler-Ross are at its core as she looks back on her life . . . and impending death.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By jb on November 18, 2007
As a world leader and pioneer her loving and caring message was one that emphasized death as part of life. She urged those that would listen to her to practice a life of love and service. The single, best essential perspective that gives someone a way of getting the most from EKR's ideas, her life's work,and this film, is from her book

Death: The Final Stage of Growth.

In particular the last chapter, Omega. It is only three pages long but contains the rich and meaningful essence of all she learned from her work in death and dying. It ends with this paragraph:
In order to be at peace, it is necessary to feel a sense of history-that you are both a part of what has come before and part of what is yet to come. Being thus surrounded, you are not alone; and the sense of urgency that pervades the present is put in perspective: Do not frivolously use the time that is yours to spend. Cherish it, that each day may bring new growth, insight, and awareness. Use this growth not selfishly, but rather in service of what may be, in the future tide of time. Let each day be a stone in the path of growth. Do not rest until what was intended has been done. But remember-go as slowly as is necessary in order to sustain a steady pace; Do not expend energy in waste. Finally, do not allow the illusory urgencies of the immediate to distract you from your vision of the eternal.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Lilac Lily on March 1, 2009
This documentary about Elisabeth Kuebler-Ross, her life and her work with the dying is very well made, not macabre or scary in any way.

In the film we learn more of Elisabeth's childhood and adult life, as well as her long career. And the overwhelming impression is that Kuebler-Ross was one determined woman with great compassion. She dedicated her life to helping terminally ill people as well as educating the general public about the dying process. She defined the 5 stages of dying and would let nothing get in the way of her life's mission.

The film was especially valuable to see in the context of Elisabeth's own impending death. I found it very interesting to hear what insights she had gained during her lifetime.

It is a must-see for anyone working with terminally ill patients as well as any non-medical person. Death is a part of all our lives yet we understand, so little about it. In order to diminish the fear we all have about it, we need to learn more about the whole process.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael on January 8, 2011
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It's worth watching. However it's more of a biography than a summary of her research and teachings. Also many of the people interviewed speak German and I struggled with the subtitles at times.
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