Looking for a film, documentary, or other age-focused media resource for your class? Click to expand and explore these resources.
Fuss Featured Films
"Most babies are accidents. Not me. I was engineered. Born to save my sister's life." Anna, Kate's younger sister
My Sister's Keeper touches on a variety of issues, including life-sustaining intervention, medical ethics, caregiving responsibility, and the "right to die". Set within the life course of Kate, a teenager who has been fighting leukemia throughout childhood, it offers a compelling opportunity to bring students face-to-face in a personal way with questions about life choices and family relationships which can then be explored more broadly and deeply when coupled with other instructional resources (see Talk of Ages: Death and Dying). Although other films capture aging-related issues more directly (e.g., Amour), My Sister's Keeper provides a clever way to launch the discussion...plus, the final twist in the plot makes for an interesting story line which students enjoy. For another twist (or alternative format), read the original novel My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult.
IMDB - For information on cast, crew, reviews, credits, trailer, etc.
My Sister's Keeper Discussion Guide
A discussion guide for teen educators and families to accompany the movie and book prepared by The F.I.L.M. Project. (pdf)
My Sister's Keeper Movie Discussion Guide
A discussion guide prepared by Residence Life Cinema (pdf)
Issues of Life and Death for all Ages - Sample class discussion questions drawn from the Talk of Ages resources featured above (pdf)
Talk of Ages Teaching Brief - Dear Sir or Madam (pdf)
A letter writing activity for students to explore their perspective on life and death choices, applying information from related class work.
Aging in Film Web Resources
R. E. Yahnke Filmography of Films on Aging
Filmography of feature length films which deal with aging, compiled by Professor Robert E. Yahnke, College of Education and Human Development, University of Minnesota.
R. E. Yahnke Filmography of Intergenerational Films
Filmography of intergenerational relationships in feature length films, compiled by Professor Robert E. Yahnke, College of Education and Human Development, University of Minnesota.
Using Film to Teach Psychology: A Resource of Film Study Guides
Developed by Professor Elizabeth Nelson, this resource sponsored by the Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology offers instructors tools for using films to enhance teaching and learning.
The Generation Above Me
A blog by Karen D. Austin, whose approach to aging is part science, part performance art, which offers overviews of contemporary films in different areas (e.g., movies set in nursing homes, movies about mature artists, movies about love and sex).
Creativity & Aging through the Lens of Film
Innovative site where information and teaching resources can be downloaded on films which focus on aging and creativity in mentoring, music, preserving cultural tradition, and service.
UC Berkeley MRC Filmography of Films and Documentaries on Aging
Filmography of films and documentaries on aging prepared by the Media Resource Center, UC Berkeley.
Programs for the Elderly Documentary Library
An on-line resource with an extensive documentary library and descriptions of films on aging.
Documentary Films for Teaching Psychology
Compiled by Professor Sylvie Taylor, this resource sponsored by the Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology provides an introduction for using documentary films as teaching tools.
Internet Movie Database (IMDb)
A comprehensive on-line database of information related to films, television programs, and actors.
Aging and the Cinema by Rick Scheidt
A list compiled by Rick Scheidt, Kansas State University.
New Media Resources in Aging
Need some fuel to generate a class discussion? Use these TED talks on contemporary views on aging.
Talk of Ages Teaching Brief: Misconceptions of Aging and Strategies for American Society
Laura Carstensen: Older People are Happier
"In the 20th century we added an unprecedented number of years to our lifespans, but is the quality of life as good? Surprisingly, yes! At TEDxWomen psychologist Laura Carstensen shows research that demonstrates that as people get older they become happier, more content, and have a more positive outlook on the world."
Jared Diamond: How Societies Can Grow Old Better
"There's an irony behind the latest efforts to extend human life: It's no picnic to be an old person in a youth-oriented society. Older people can become isolated, lacking meaningful work and low on funds. In this intriguing talk, Jared Diamond looks at how many different societies treat their elders - some better, some worse - and suggests we all take advantage of experience."
Meg Jay: Why 30 is Not the New 20
"Clinical psychologist Meg Jay has a bold message for twentysomethings: Contrary to popular belief, your 20s are not a throwaway decade. In this provocative talk, Jay says that just because marriage, work and kids are happening later in life, doesn't mean you can't start planning now. She gives 3 pieces of advice for how twentysomethings can re-claim adulthood in the defining decade of their lives."
Alanna Shaikh: How I'm Preparing to Get Alzheimer's
"When faced with a parent suffering from Alzheimer's, most of us respond with denial ("It won't happen to me") or extreme efforts at prevention. But global health expert and TED Fellow Alanna Shaikh sees it differently. She's taking three concrete steps to prepare for the moment - should it arrive - when she herself gets Alzheimer's disease."
Diana Nyad: Never, Ever Give Up
"In the pitch-black night, stung by jellyfish, choking on salt water, singing to herself, hallucinating ... Diana Nyad just kept on swimming. And that's how she finally achieved her lifetime goal as an athlete: an extreme 100-mile swim from Cuba to Florida - at age 64. Hear her story."
Cynthia Kenyon: Experiments that Hint of Longer Lives
"What controls aging? Biochemist Cynthia Kenyon has found a simple genetic mutation that can double the lifespan of a simple worm, C. elegans. The lessons from that discovery, and others, are pointing to how we might one day significantly extend youthful human life."
Jane Fonda: Life's Third Act
"Within this generation, an extra 30 years have been added to our life expectancy - and these years aren't just a footnote or a pathology. In this talk, Jane Fonda asks how we can think about this new phase of our lives."
Judy MacDonald Johnston: Prepare for a Good End of Life
"Thinking about death is frightening, but planning ahead is practical and leaves more room for peace of mind in our final days. In a solemn, thoughtful talk, Judy MacDonald Johnston shares 5 practices for planning for a good end of life."
Aubrey de Grey: A Roadmap to End Aging
"Cambridge researcher Aubrey de Grey argues that aging is merely a disease - and a curable one at that. Humans age in seven basic ways, he says, all of which can be averted."
Gregory Petsko: The Coming Neurological Epidemic
"Biochemist Gregory Petsko makes a convincing argument that, in the next 50 years, we'll see an epidemic of neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's, as the world population ages. His solution: more research into the brain and its functions."
Ed Ulbrich: How Benjamin Button Got His Face
"Ed Ulbrich, the digital-effects guru from Digital Domain, explains the Oscar-winning technology that allowed his team to digitally create the older versions of Brad Pitt's face for "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button."