Burzynski – the Power of Expository Documentary

With the release of a new trailer for Eric Merola’s BURZYNSKI (click here), I thought it timely to post an article that appeared in the South Australian Film Corporation’s newsletter in March 2013, entitled Burzynski – the Power of Expository Documentary.

BURZYNSKI – the Power of Expository Documentary

Adelaide’s Jon Barratt (Krolyn Studios) is an ardent believer in the power of film to create social change, and he further attests that the investigative documentary has become more relevant than ever before.

“As our distrust and discontent with governments, institutions and large corporations increases, so too does our societal appetite for truthful information, integrity and the individual voice,” Jon states. “Eric Merola’s ‘Burzynski’ films are the perfect example of why expository documentaries must not only be made, but exhaustively and fearlessly promoted.”

BURZYNSKI: CANCER IS SERIOUS BUSINESS PART 2, on which Jon is credited Assistant Editor and Script Editor, continues the true story of controversial Polish doctor Stanislaw Burzynski MD PhD and his cancer therapy Antineoplastons, which he discovered in the 1970s and then developed in the United States over three decades ago.

“I’m honoured to have assisted Eric on this project. I watched the original film about a year after losing my Mother to breast cancer. And for two weeks, I flipped between feelings of anger, hope, desperation, even flat out rage. The subject matter is as staggering as it is utterly convincing – it’s a must for everyone to see.” (endorsed link to the full film below)

The original documentary, simply entitled BURZYNSKI (winner of two Audience Awards at the HumanDoc International Film Festival Warsaw 2011), highlighted the ‘unsuccessful’ attempts of America’s Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to have Burzynski imprisoned after an assembly of cured patients rallied behind him and his treatment. It was the most publicised and embarrassing defeat in the FDA’s history, and left the regulatory agency with no alternative but to allow Burzynski’s therapy admission into sanctioned clinical trials.

This is where the sequel picks up. PART 2 updates the audience on the progress of these clinical trials and the FDA’s continued clandestine attempts to have Burzynski’s medical licence revoked and his treatment quashed. It also follows the harrowing journeys of Burzynski’s current patients, and how their battles with cancer often run secondary to their battles with family, friends and their local oncologists when it comes to choosing Burzynski’s treatment. But, incredibly, that’s not the worst of it. The sequel uncovers the workings of a well-organized underground group, called the ‘Skeptics’, whose mandate is solely to discredit Burzynski by saturating online blogs and social pages with calculated smears, and ruthlessly harassing and intimidating potential and current patients under Burzynski’s care.

“I struggled to believe it until I talked with some of Burzynski’s patients – including an Australian who was cured in the 90s and has been fighting for his cause ever since. It’s alarming when you learn the tactics they [the FDA] have used to stop him. But, it’s vastly more terrifying to think just how far they might go. And, then the real question – who or what can possibly stop them?”

Jon contends that the documentary’s real power lies in its ability to challenge our conditioned models of the world.

“It’s more than creating awareness,” he says. “People react fiercely when you challenge their conditioned beliefs. If you trigger an acute emotional response in enough people, you can incite massive action – that’s the catalyst for permeating social and institutional change … And it’s not only in the laps of the filmmakers. It’s the responsibility of distributors and broadcasters to be both fearless and diligent in delivering controversial content which is of profound social significance.”

BURZYNSKI: CANCER IS SERIOUS BUSINESS, PART 2 premiered at the San Luis Obispo Film Festival (California) on March 10 – just days after the ‘Skeptics’ failed in an attempt to have the PART 1 stopped from airing on a high-rating US public television station. PART 2 has also secured international distribution through a major US company and the DVD will be available for purchase in Australia from July.

Click here to visit Burzynski Movies International Website.

Click here to watch BURZYNSKI THE MOVIE – PART 1 (Producer-endorsed free version)

Click here to watch CPT Public Television Broadcast of Burzynski Pt 1 (including interviews)

Jon Barratt (Krolyn Studios) is based at Adelaide Studios, South Australia.

Article Source – South Australian Film Corporation (14 March, 2013) http://www.safilm.com.au/Article/NewsDetail.aspx?p=16&id=2483

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