The film opens with Michelangelo, aged 89, carving his last sculpture. His works come alive as he flashes us back to his beginnings and confronts his own life. In the process the viewer experiences close and personal contact not only with the masterpieces, but with the master as well. Michelangelo: Self-Portrait is a testament to the pain and frustration, as well as the joy and triumph, entailed in artistic creation and in ordinary life. Narrated in Michelangelo's own words, this powerful documentary offers an intimate glimpse into the artist's inner world whose life and work became an authentic spiritual journey. Filming in 35-mm over a period of ten years, Oscar winning director Robert Snyder obtained full cooperation of the Vatican, allowing him to closely capture Michelangelo's works in great detail and clarity. For the first time since 1972 the Vatican allowed a film crew to go behind the bulletproof glass partition protecting the Pieta.