The Real Thumbelina
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The Real Thumbelina

2011, Health  -   9 Comments
Ratings: 7.76/10 from 17 users.

In most respects, Amelie is exactly like any other four-year-old girl. Adorable and precocious, she revels in dressing like a princess and taking part in creative activities at school. But Amelie must contend with a unique set of challenges brought on by Russell Silver Syndrome, a rare form of drawfism that affects her physical and functional development. The Real Thumbelina is a touching chronicle of her daily life, the enormous struggles and uncertainties assumed by her loving parents, and the hopes for a future where she can thrive like any normal adult.

In spite of her age, Amelie remains the size of a one-year-old. She requires nearly constant care, and her genetic abnormality leads to frequent visits to the hospital. She has trouble brushing her teeth, eating a full meal, and balancing herself when she walks or carries heavy objects. She suffers from dislocated hips, a curving of her spine, and malnutrition. Her parents worry about the cumulative effects the disorder could have on her health in later years, but they also fret over the potential for bullying, crippled self-esteem, and an inability to form meaningful relationships as she grows older.

Local doctors are mystified by her condition, but they believe that growth hormone therapy could provide the best hope for a solution. As the parents weigh the benefits and risks associated with these treatments, they're alerted to the existence of a retreat that could change the course of their daughter's life. There, Amelie will have an opportunity to meet other children who suffer from the same disorder, and her parents can meet with the world's foremost experts on the syndrome. How will Amelie's condition progress? Will she ever grow to an average adult height? Will health issues continue to plague her? With great optimism, they travel from their home in Halifax, West Yorksire to the city of Chicago in their quest to find answers.

The Real Thumbelina follows the family through each intimate step of their journey. Along the way, we're introduced to others who have overcome the challenges of the condition to lead fulfilling lives. The film is a testament to the power of hope, unconditional love and a welcoming community.

Directed by: Barnaby Peel

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9 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Jenifer

    In the video the doctors did not know that anything was wrong with her until she was a few years old. So how can you do a abortion on a child you do not even know has a problem. As far as doing abortion just because a person is disabled then what is next. Those who are ****** like you or only have certain genes next. That was the very first thing Hitler did was kill off the old and disabled.

  2. Eff

    All of u are speaking a load of crap, leave Amelia alone, she is beautiful and obviously she's meant to be in this world. I would hate to think if it happens to the people who put her down, shame on you.

  3. Matilda Samson

    They even said that they didn't know that she had this condition originally. Maybe you should do some research first mate.

  4. Tracey

    I agree with John also.

  5. Marcia

    She is one precious little girl and has so much to give. I really admire her parents for doing all they can to make her life the best it can be. The world would be a lot worse off if it didn't have Amelia. She is a gift of God, as are all children regardless of their condition.

  6. DonnaSTV

    Until you've had and lost a child, you have no idea what you would do to keep them alive and see them thriving. This child has problems, but she obviously wants to live and her parents want her to survive and love her and want her, perfect or not.

  7. TLA

    John, you are not Amelie. You are not living in her body, in a family of people who love her, assisted by doctors who may be able to do something to make her life easier and more "normal." You are not too young to know the dangers the future may bring, so you won't just be playing with your (admittedly much bigger) little friends at school, learning to read and count. It is not reasonable to assume that you know better than she or her parents whether her life is worth living. It's not your decision (thank God!)

  8. GunnarInLA

    ...I agree with you, John...100 percent...

  9. john

    It's a truly sick and uncompassionate society that brings a child into the world who is so deformed that suffering is the mainstay of their life. The so called primitives put modern mentally ill mankind to shame. And shame it is. Suffering should not be what life is about yet our fear of death defeats us every time. Well, not all of us, just 99%.