The Facemakers (2000)
Winner of the US Circle of
Excellence Media Awards for Best Medical Documentary and finalist in
the New York Film Festival Awards for Best Humanitarian Documentary,
documents the remarkable changes that occurred in the lives of three
children as a result of Operation Smile's visit to Davao City in the
Philippines in 1999.
Two of the children received
surgery during the mission. Nine-year-old Rozal Garces was treated for
her cleft lip, and four-year-old Amorjoy Felipe had a cleft lip and
palate revision. The third child, Abel Gastardo, had a condition too
severe to be treated during the time of the mission. Abel suffered from
a facial encephalocele, an extreme protrusion of brain tissue from the
front of his skull.
Seven months later, we follow
Abel to the United States. He’s been brought over by Operation Smile to
receive major surgery in Virginia, at the Children's Hospital of the
This moving film
captures the resilience and bravery of the children and their families
whose lives are transformed by surgery.