Is there anything wrong with being a euphoric visionary artist? That question cuts to the essence of “Touched With Fire,”
Paul Dalio’s extraordinarily sensitive, nonjudgmental exploration of
bipolar disorder and creativity. When Marco (Luke Kirby) and Carla (Katie Holmes),
poets with the condition also known as manic depression, meet at a
group-therapy session in a mental hospital, their emotional combustion
undercuts any available treatment.
they adopt a you-and-me-against-the-world attitude and embark on a mind
trip fueled by Marco’s science-fiction-worthy interpretation of the
mystical connections among things. They build an impenetrable fantasy of
themselves as displaced otherworldly beings and parents-to-be of a yet
unborn miracle child.
manic phase of a bipolar cycle often produces a sense of omnipotence
and infinite possibility that can feel so wonderfully exciting that
patients often stop taking their medication. “Touched With Fire” only
tangentially deals with the depressive phase, when a patient can become
catatonic and suicidal.
Continue reading the New York Times review here.