Monday, December 16, 2019

Movie Review: Charged - The Eduardo Garcia Story

"Being alive with a few handicaps is much better than being dead ... that's for damn sure" - Eduardo Garcia. 


A story of life and healing.


Charged: The Eduardo Garcia Story is a movie that chronicles a man's recovery after an electrocution accident that should have left him dead in the back country of Montana. Not only did he survive, he thrives. 

As an adult, Eduardo returns to Montana. While on an outing in a glorious wilderness setting, he finds a bear carcass in a old steel tube. Curious, and with no warning that the old tube was an electrical station, he touched the bear and was electrocuted with 2,400 volts. When he regained consciousness, he somehow walked back down the trail and found help. He was life-flighted from Montana to Salt Lake City Burn Trauma ICU. 

It is mysterious to me that life is both fragile and strong beyond understanding. An accident can kill us in the blink of an eye. Or we can continue living through that which should have killed us. With no explanation to the how and why we survived. This is the case for Eduardo. It is beyond our ability to understand how he survived. 

The electrical shock blew off part of his side, head, and hand/fingers. It left him without a large portion of muscle. The film shows his treatment and wounds - including scenes that are not for the squeamish. I am not squeamish and I had to look away from the screen several times. The burnt skin and holes in his body looked like movie special effects but the damage filmed was real.

This documentary is not about a perfect hero. No. Eduardo has his flaws and difficulties in relationships. His ex/best friend/business partner, Jennifer, remains at his side during his recovery. Eduardo recognizes that caregivers are the forgotten victims of such trauma. He family members, including his previously absent father, are shown throughout the process of physical and emotional healing. 

Eduardo, a chef prior to the accident, resumes cooking when he returns home. He jokes that at least with the prosthetic arm he no longer has to worry about cutting his fingers while chopping. He resumes outdoor activities; running, hiking, surfing, and hunting. 

We all have pain and trauma - our individual crosses to bear. What makes us different is how we choose to live our lives while facing difficulties. Frankly, I'm not so good at it. I see others who seem to be optimistically facing much more hardship than I am, yet I continue to struggle to get out of bed many days. But I'm working at finding ways to stay upbeat and productive. Eduardo inspires me to keep working at it and to appreciate every single day. We are not promised tomorrow.

Eduardo Garcia reflects about his need to take a full appraisal of himself. His strength and tenacity is displayed from the moment he walks out of the wilderness to find help to the end of the movie while he's continuing to address relationships and living. But his realization of the need to take a good look at all aspects of himself I think is what requires the most bravery. No one wants to take an honest look at our own character flaws.

I saw this movie for free with my Amazon Prime account. It is also available on Blu-ray. If you are looking for a motivational movie to help you keep on, keeping on... this might be it. 

Related Link:

MontanaMex.com is Chef Garcia's website with original spice blends and sauces for sale. He also lists many recipes



7 comments:

  1. This sounds like a movie my husband will enjoy, I will have to see if we have it on Amazon Prime here in Australia.

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  2. You always find some of the most interesting documentaries! This one sounds like it would have a very powerful message that we all should embrace. I wholeheartedly agree with the opening quote. I have no doubt I would admire his tenacity and endurance. I already do and I've only read your review. Thanks for the recommendation.

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  3. I will definitely watch this movie on Prime. That intersection where extreme fragility and resilience reside is definitely a place where we plumb the depths of our existence. I love inspirational films about individuals who are so very real in their struggle to rise up from unimaginable circumstances. My heart is with all who are facing any kind of struggle.

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  4. I can't say it any better than Sylvestermouse and Renaissance Woman already have. While I don't think I could deal with watching the more graphic shots of his wounds, this sounds like an incredibly inspiring documentary well worth watching!

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  5. Your description does sound rather graphic, but I admire Eduardo's tenacity and determination to make the best of the life he has been given through a fateful accident.

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  6. WOW. You had me with every word of this review. Incredible tenacity in the soul of some. I think the strength is in all of us, but until we face adversity, as we all know, we have no idea we have even one tenth of it. I wouldn't be able to watch this movie, although I'm so intrigued!! What a journey he's been on, incredibly difficult, and his fortitude is admirable.

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  7. Okay this is a movie that I must see. Like you I struggle with the difficulties in my life currently and need to find that motivation some days. I will have to check this movie out now that I am a Prime member. Thanks for the heads up.

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