Way back in 2007 when I was at LimmudNY I saw a short version of the documentary Praying With Lior, about a 13 year old Jewish boy with Down Syndrome having his bar mitzvah. I wrote at the time about how impressed I was with the movie, but it didn’t come out for a while, and it has been sitting on my Netflix queue for a while now. I finally popped it in the DVD player last night, and was able to watch the whole thing. It’s really a fantastic film with lots of interesting things to say about prayer, disability, family, and death.
I don’t remember this from the screening in 2007, but it’s definitely a tearjerker, so get your hankies ready.
While looking for the preview for Praying With Lior I stumbled across this video called Best Bar Mitzvah Speech which has been viewed an astonishing 206,000 times. The thing is, it’s a completely typical bar mitzvah speech. There is nothing extraordinary about it. Anyone want to watch this and explain to me why hundreds of thousands of people have watched it? What am I missing?