Back to Films

Confessions of a Good Samaritan


Director Penny Lane's decision to become a "Good Samaritan" by giving one of her kidneys to a stranger turns into a funny and moving personal quest to understand the nature of altruism. CONFESSIONS OF A GOOD SAMARITAN is a provocative inquiry into the science, history and ethics of organ transplantation, asking an ancient question in a whole new way: who is your neighbor, and what do you owe them?


The Filmmakers

Penny Lane Director

Penny Lane has been making award-winning, innovative nonfiction films spanning the worlds of independent and avant-garde film for over a decade. Her fourth feature documentary Hail Satan? (2019) debuted at Sundance and is now in wide release with Magnolia Pictures. She has been awarded grants from the Sundance Institute, Creative Capital, Cinereach, TFI Documentary Fund, Jerome Foundation, Catapult Film Fund, LEF Foundation, NYSCA, and many other organizations. In 2018 she was admitted to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. And yes, Penny Lane is her real name.

Gabriel Sedgwick Producer

Gabriel Sedgwick hails from the grim and frostbitten kingdom of Sweden but lives in New York City, where he has produced fiction and documentary films that have screened at festivals including Sundance, SXSW, Rotterdam, Full Frame, and New Directors/New Films. His productions include director Penny Lane's documentaries Hail Satan? (Magnolia Pictures) and The Pain of Others (Fandor) and Lanre Olabisi's fiction features August the First and Somewhere in the Middle (Film Movement). He's a 2018 Sundance Creative Producing Labs fellow.

Festivals & Awards

Cinema Eye Honors


Winner - The Unforgettables 

Nominee - Audience Choice Prize

Independent Film Festival of Boston


Winner - Karen Schmeer Award for Excellence in Documentary Editing



Nominee - Best Scientific Documentary

Film Club's The Lost Weekend


Winner - Best Director - Documentary

Doc10 Film Festival


Official Selection

Hot Docs


Official Selection

SXSW Film & TV Festival


World Premiere

Winner - The Hope Special Award


My favorite doc of SXSW this year was Penny Lane’s “CONFESSIONS OF A GOOD SAMARITAN,” a fascinating dissection of altruism, empathy, and personal exploration”

Deeply moving and inspirational…CONFESSIONS OF A GOOD SAMARITAN tackles important issues–altruism and organ donation–in a depth and breadth that poses challenges to all of us to question our own attitudes and behavior”

-Alliance of Women Film Journalists

...Lane opens herself up to scrutiny in a way that’s as vulnerable emotionally as what she’ll experience physically…”

-The Moveable Fest

a bracingly intimate look at one person performing an extraordinary act.”

-Hammer to Nail