DE­PRO­GRAMMED

NOW Magazine - Hot Docs - - Reviews -

(Mia Dono­van, Canada). 90 min­utes. Rat­ing: NNN Mia Dono­van’s De­pro­grammed looks at the cult hys­te­ria of the 70s through the work of Ted Pa­trick, a flam­boy­ant self­styled de­pro­gram­mer hired by wor­ried par­ents to res­cue col­lege-age kids who’d joined ashrams or com­munes – although, in present- day in­ter­views, Pa­trick’s “cured” sub­jects all ad­mit they even­tu­ally just told him what he wanted to hear so he’d let them go. One of them is Dono­van’s step­brother Matthew, whom Pa­trick at­tempted to free from sup­posed Sa­tanic in­flu­ences in 1988.

Pa­trick is a fas­ci­nat­ing sub­ject, and Dono­van (In­side Lara Roxx) knows it, spend­ing plenty of time let­ting him jus­tify his meth­ods – and sub­tly sug­gest­ing that his and his fel­low de­pro­gram­mers’ self- right­eous con­vic­tions were, and still are, just as cultish as those of the Moonies or the Hare Kr­ish­nas. But she’s so in­vested in him that she lets other as­pects of De­pro­grammed slide – es­pe­cially Matthew’s story, which re­mains frus­trat­ingly un­de­fined. NW Apr 26, 6:15 pm, TIFF 3; Apr 27, 1: 30 pm, Sco­tia­bank 3; Apr 30, 9: 45 pm, TIFF 2

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