Here’s a list of movies that contain autistic characters. The list doesn’t include those television shows and the list is not complete. We only choose the top 10 movies which are highly recommended by parents or public. Most of the actors or actresses did a remarkable job of portraying autistic people. However, there’s also some confusion. It is said that Oscar-winner Kate Winslet is going to narrate a documentary that tells a heartbreaking story about a mother and her son with autism; the film is called “The Sunshine Boy”.
1. Rain Man
Actors: Dustin Hoffman, Tom Cruise, Valeria Golino
Director: Barry Levinson
Rain Man took Academy honors for best director, screenplay, picture and actor (Dustin Hoffman) in 1988. The story is very touching; it’s between two brothers, an autistic one played by Dustin Hoffman who inherits 3 million dollars from their father, and the other one is a car dealer who’s not close to them. They went to a cross-country journey after their father’s death and get to know each other.
2. Mozart and The Whale
Actors: Josh Hartnett, Radha Mitchell
Director: Peter Naess
A romance story happened between a boy and a girl who both suffer from Asperger’s Syndrome, a mild case of autism. They are very different from those normal couples because of the disorder, it makes love more complicated. But still, it’s a lovely story.
3. What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?
Actors: Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Juliette Lewis, Mary Steenburgen
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
This movie is deep-moving, extremely touching, a lot of people’s favorite. It’s a story about family loyalty, sadness and the power of love. The most shining character of this drama is a retarded boy played by Leonardo DiCaprio, Arnie. Depp and DiCapro have a wonderful chemistry together.
4. Killer Diller
Actors: Lucas Black, Fred Willard, William Lee Scott, Ashley Johnson
Director: Tricia Brock
The film is based on Clyde Edgerton’s highly acclaimed novel. When guitar-playing car thief Wesley Benfield meets Vernon, who is an autistic savant with rocking piano skills, they will transform to the Killer Diller Blues Band.
5. The Boy Who Could Fly
Actors: Jay Underwood, Lucy Deakins, Fred Savage
Director: Nick Castle
An autistic teenager went to his uncle’s after both his parents died in a air crash. He makes friends with the neighborhood girl who become his tutor later and help him. Many parents of autistic children claimed that the boy in this film seems so real autistic that just like their sons. It’s a beautiful movie.
6. Mercury Rising
Actors: Bruce Willis, Alec Baldwin, Miko Hughes
Director: Harold Becker
A 9-year-old little boy with autism has a genius for breaking codes. And he become a target of assassins after he breaks a top government code. Bruce Wills, as a hero, protects the boy from being hurt. The boy’s parents are killed by the government. He always repeats words and avoids eye contact. It’s heart-breaking to see him like that.
7. Relative Fear
Actors: Jason Blicker, James Brolin, Denise Crosby, Darlanne Fluegel, Linda Sorenson
Director: Georges Mihalka
Thriller Movie. There’s some really frightening moments in the movie, but nothing too bloody. A boy with autism who is fascinated with crime on TV, is suspected as a killer responsible for a series of murders occur in the neighborhood. The end of the movie is surprising.
8. David’s Mother
Actors: Kirstie Alley, Sam Waterston, Stockard Channing, Michael A. Goorjian, Chris Sarandon
Director: Robert Allan Ackerman
A mother of an autistic boy saw this movie and said: “This is my life!” The film is highly recommended to parents of children with autism, mental retarded or other disabled cases. There’s something that you can learn about and benefit from.
Actors: Ed Gildersleeve, Nikki and Jessi Haddad, Courtney Sanford
Director: Eric Leiser
Fantasy story. A little twin girl named Anna, who has Asperger’s Syndrome and is unable to cope with reality. Their father leaves the family. The sisters cannot face the pain and sink deeper and deeper into their imaginations.
10. Miracle Run
Actors: Mary-Louise Parker, Aidan Quinn
Director: Gregg Champion
Mrs. Morgan’s twin boys are diagnosed with autism, and her husband cannot fact the fact and leave them. The story is about a mother’s fierce love to her autistic sons. Touching movie.