How to Die in Oregon
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In 1994, Oregon became the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide. As a result, any individual whom two physicians diagnose as having less than six months to live can lawfully request a fatal dose of barbiturate to end his or her life. Since 1994, more than 500 Oregonians have taken their mortality into their own hands.
In HOW TO DIE IN OREGON, filmmaker Peter Richardson gently enters the lives of the terminally ill as they consider whether and when to end their lives by lethal overdose. At the heart of the film are the patients themselves, their families and friends, as they grapple with the legal option they are allowed in Oregon. Through their stories, Richardson examines both sides of this complex, emotionally charged issue. What emerges is a life-affirming, staggeringly powerful portrait of what it means to die with dignity.
- Extended Footage
- Stories Not Shown in the Film
At Sundance, there are buzz movies, and then there are the ones that everyone clears a space around and discusses in hushed tones. HOW TO DIE IN OREGON is one of those. --The Boston Globe
Aptly harrowing, but inspiring as well…exquisite. --Variety
Top Customer Reviews
The film displays an even hand in tackling a complicated issue. The Death With Dignity Act is a progressive policy that permits doctors to prescribe a treatment that allows a patient the means to end their own life should their medical status become unbearable. It is not considered assisted suicide (which put Jack Kevorkian in jail) as the subjects must be able to physically accomplish the deed without someone administering it to them. The film introduces advocates, volunteers, and patients of varying positions and viewpoints. Some opt to go through with Death With Dignity, some do not, some become incapacitated and are unable to do so. Richardson has intimate access to these subjects but the film always seems respectful of what it is showing us.Read more ›
There is no fanfare in death and dying and the issue in this film is not treated with drama and stigma. Much a part of living, death is dealt with lovingly and respectfully. Those individuals featured in "How to Die in Oregon" who let us into the most intimate parts and decisions of their lives (especially Cody Curtis) leave us understanding quality of life just a little bit better.
Whether you believe in Oregon's historic "Death with Dignity Act" or flatly oppose it ... watch this film to gain a little more empathy and understanding. It is my hope that this film is watched, discussed and embraced by more people. This is an issue that needs to be broached more than ever these days as medical advances continue that allow for length of life without true quality.
5 stars for a very touching, thoughtful an poignant film.
The poignance of Cody Curtis's story in this excellent documentary, and of the wife of a husband with ALS, moved me to tears. This shows the first hand struggles and humanity of real people facing death.
I appreciate the continued efforts that Oregonians have made to stay dedicated to human rights and encourage everyone to see this film.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have used this video as a starting point for discussions with my students related to having a good quality of death in much the same way we discuss having a good quality of life. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Marcus E. Sharpe
This documentary is very well done and is sensitive and thoughtful. The film deals with assisted suicide for the terminally ill and is sometimes hard to watch and very sad, but the... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Louise D. Somes
A smart, honest look at the Right-to-Die law in Oregon. Opening scene is of a gentleman who says, "This is easy. Tell people this is easy." Clearly he was ready to go. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Valencia Bathe
Very good movie, I teach and when we get to the subject of death and dying I always show this movie.Published 2 months ago by Carrie Wilson
This will really make you think about what's the meaning of life.Published 3 months ago by Fredrick Smith
This a must see for elderly people. Now that California has passed the right to die act,people can now die with dignity and not live with extreme pain.This film shows why and how. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Tom Gibbons