My review of Pixar’s ‘Float’ as an adult with autismBy Kerry Magro | January 9, 2020
This guest post is by Kerry Magro, a professional speaker, best-selling author and autism entertainment consultant who is on the autism spectrum. A version of this blog appeared on Kerrymagro.com.
Disney+ has been in the news recently for a short film that will come out on January 10, 2020 featuring a nonverbal boy on the autism spectrum. Even before this news broke though everyone in my local area was talking about the hit Disney+ Pixar Short called ‘Float.’ The short film was written by Bobby Alcid Rubio based on his real-life relationship with his son who has autism.
Rubio told Variety, “I was looking at my son, and I thought, ‘I have to tell this story.’ I couldn’t let it go, so I started storyboarding it.”
Spoilers ahead: The short focuses on a father and son relationship where the son one day learns how to defy gravity. In the hopes of being a good father and to avoid his son being judged and questioned he tries to hide his defying gravity from the outside world .
This connected with me growing up on the autism spectrum from the aspect of being ‘normal.’ So many times people would judge me for things like constantly rubbing my hands together and because of that I tried to hide this characteristic away from the world. When I was mainstreamed for the first time in 4th grade I tried to make it even more discreet knowing I may be judged for being different.
At the end of the short the Dad realizes that he went too far and he needs to let his son be who he is. I believe this is a lesson we need to continue to embrace in our community. As an autism entertainment consultant, one area I hope I can continue to advocate for in our entertainment industry is diversity. Bullying and ignorance sometimes feel like they are at an all-time high because we are so fixated on having people fit in to the crowd versus standing out. It’s actually a wonderful metaphor for the entire special needs community too.
We need to embrace uniqueness and realize that normal is truly just a dryer setting. I applaud Mr. Rubio for bringing this story to life and giving a platform for us to discuss autism and acceptance on a national scale.