My Beautiful Broken Brain

My Beautiful Broken Brain

Netflix poster of My Beautiful Broken Brain
Directed by Sophie Robinson
Lotje Sodderland
Produced by Sophie Robinson
Release dates
  • November 21, 2014 (2014-11-21) (IDFA)
Running time
84 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English

My Beautiful Broken Brain is a 2014 documentary film about the life of then-34-year-old Lotje Sodderland after she suffered a hemorrhagic stroke in November 2011, initially completely losing her ability to read, write, or speak coherently.[1]

David Lynch became an executive producer of the film.[2]


The film starts with a recap of the stroke and follows the life of its protagonist Lotje in the year that followed, with all her progress and major setbacks.[3][4]

Lotje started taking video-selfies of herself just a few days after the stroke, while still in hospital. Large parts of the film consist of material filmed by herself on her phone. This together with various sequences showing the world from her point-of-view at that time, including for example her hallucinations, produce a rather personal storytelling style.[3][2][4]


The film was initiated by its protagonist itself. According to herself, making a film about her struggles was the first linear thought she had after the stroke.[1] She started taking video-selfies of herself while still in hospital, and two weeks later contacted documentary filmmaker Sophie Robinson to enlist her help.

Funding for editing and post-production was collected via Kickstarter between November 28 and December 20, 2013. The initial goal of £30,000 was exceeded by £7340.[5]


My Beautiful Broken Brain had its world premiere at the 2014 International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, where it won the DOC U award.[6]

Netflix started streaming the film as a Netflix Original worldwide on March 18, 2016.[7]


  1. 1 2 Sodderland, Lotje (November 22, 2014). "I felt as if I had become fear itself". The Guardian. Retrieved April 6, 2016.
  2. 1 2 Wills, Kate (17 March 2016). "My Beautiful Broken Brain: The amazing collaboration of David Lynch and a woman who 'video-selfied' her stroke". The Independent. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  3. 1 2 Vans, Katy (10 June 2015). "My Beautiful Broken Brain review - moving study of life after stroke". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  4. 1 2 Oliver, Simone S. (17 March 2016). "At SXSW, a Woman Who Had a Stroke Turns Director". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
  5. "My Beautiful Broken Brain". Kickstarter. Retrieved 3 August 2016.
  6. "Award Winners and Juries 1988-2015". Retrieved 3 August 2016.
  7. Spangler, Todd (February 5, 2016). "Netflix Picks Up 'My Beautiful Broken Brain' Documentary from David Lynch". Variety. Retrieved April 4, 2016.
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