“Extremis” is pure, raw, powerful emotion in movie form. This isn't acting. This is life. Netflix’s riveting 20-minute documentary examines the agonizing moments in which a family must decide whether to pull the plug on a loved one’s ventilator or allow a machine to keep them alive. I cannot even imagine making this decision for my parents, wife, or child. The emotions captured in this documentary are indescribable. Beyond the family members (and patients who help to make this decision), the film documents the heartache that the doctors must endure on a daily basis. There is one moment where we see Dr. Jessica Zitter burst into tears after having one of these hopeless conversations and it makes you appreciate the doctors who must see people at their very worse day after day. It is no surprise that this powerful piece was nominated for the Best Short Subject Documentary Oscar. Movies are full of farfetched situations in which one person must make a decision that could save someone’s life. This documentary is made up of real situations in which a helpless patient must place their fate into their family’s hands. “Extremis” is a poignant display of human emotion that will stay with you far beyond its short running length.
[Pictured: Approach this film with caution. It does not contain any happiness or hope]