SCI Can Happen To Anyone At Anytime

Aaron Baker
Spinal Cord Injury Lifestyle Specialist | Shield HealthCare
11/26/22  11:25 AM PST
movie about spinal cord injury

Any One Of Us

Any One Of Us is a documentary film that illustrates how quickly life can change. The film, released in 2019, is a glimpse at prominent mountain biker Paul Basagoitia’s 2015 spinal cord injury and his recovery journey.

The exceptional aspect of this film is that director Fernando Villena brought together stories of seventeen others who have faced spinal cord injuries to share how their experiences compare and contrast to Paul’s experience.

I was fortunate to assist the Red Bull Films production by assembling a large portion of the cast, inlcuding friends of mine and members of the spinal cord injury community. I was privileged to share my story in the film as well.

Paul’s journey (much of which he filmed himself) is interspersed with footage of the other survivors (Steph Aiello, Jesse Billauer, Russel Burke, Tobias Forrest, Chelsie Hill, Patrick Ivison, Samantha Lopez, Mike Mac, Xander Mozejewski, Vanessa Osman, Morgan Ott, Sarah Petterson, Cynthia Ramirez, Annette Ross, Ron Weinreich, Sam Willoughby and myself) who tell intimate details about their challenges and experiences. This reinforces the powerful message that each spinal cord injury is highly individual, and that there’s no universal level of recovery people can achieve.

Something that distinguishes Any One Of Us is that it’s not a retroactive documentation of “this is how someone recovers from a spinal cord injury,” but rather, an in-the-moment look at the struggles Paul faces, the discouragement he feels, the uncertainties ahead and the battles he’s fighting. It is an intimate peek at physical and emotional challenges, and how the recovery journey affects relationships with family, friends and significant others, buoyed with context from the other survivors.

As someone with an SCI I appreciate Paul’s honest candor:

“This f—— injury sucks. I hate it. Not going to lie. Every day I cry. I wake up, I’m devastated by it. But you guys keep me plugging away and trying my hardest to get back on my feet, and I will.” – Paul.

His story isn’t a blueprint for others, but the stories from Paul and others illustrate many of the challenges for SCI survivors. Any One Of Us helps shine a light on spinal cord injuries and what they can mean.

It tells an important story, and does so in a remarkable way. Plus, proceeds of the film are donated to specifically for spinal cord injury research!

You can watch the film on HBO, or click HERE to view the trailer.

Grab your popcorn and enjoy!


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