While the camera remains dispassionate, the filmmakers clearly have an agenda. Spurred by the Terri Schiavo media spectacle in Florida, they set out to show that it's difficult and sometimes impossible to determine what's going on in the brain, even when a patient seems conscious. One of those being treated here, for example, refuses to cooperate with therapists. Further testing shows that he can read written words but can no longer hear.
Experts say President Bush long ago earned the shameful silk on matters of Iraq, huge tax cuts for the wealthy after 9/11, and the environment, while others believe it was the Terri Schiavo affair that took him over the top and iced the honor. The White House cited scheduling conflicts for the delay in bestowing the family prize, and noted it was wonderful that the Russian -- a man whose very soul the president says he has seen -- could participate.