A consultation room, in a Belgian public hospital. A doctor receives patients there. These men and women have come to talk about their end of life. Most are seriously ill and are trying to assess their prognosis.
Most often sent by their general practitioner, they come accompanied by a member of their family or a neighbor, to obtain a second opinion. Even if death is inevitable in the short term and they know it, they need to understand the evolution of their clinical condition with a specialist to anticipate the different stages of their pathology.
Agnès Lejeune and Gaëlle Hardy’s Closing Words follows people who are leaning towards euthanasia due to incurable and painful illnesses, and a doctor, who offers them guidance and support. This calm and tasteful Belgian film premiered at Warsaw Film Festival, where it received an honorable mention.
Refraining from sensationalism, the documentarists follow the calm conversations held in the doctor’s office, where the patients’ personal reasons for ending their lives, as well as the legal criteria for the procedure are discussed.
Tytti Rantanen (translated by Mira Sairanen)