Film Gets Enthusiastic Reactions from Leading Experts
JULY 26th, 2016
By special invitation, 250 leading Alzheimer’s researchers from around the world gathered in Toronto to attend a private sneak preview of Monster in the Mind, the Convenient Untruth About Alzheimer’s, shown during the annual Alzheimer Association’s International Conference.
Director-producer Jean Carper, executive producer Lee Koromvokis, and numerous prominent Alzheimer’s researchers featured in the documentary were in the audience, including Dr. Peter Whitehouse, professor of neurology at Case Western Reserve. Earlier Dr. Whitehouse presented a scientific poster predicting the documentary will “have a huge impact by enlightening the public about the truths of Alzheimer’s the way Al Gore’s documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, did about global warming.”
Endorsing that opinion, poster co-author Margaret Lock, McGill University, a noted Alzheimer’s scholar and author of The Alzheimer Conundrum, declared Monster in the Mind “Super important and hilarious!.”
From the invitation, scientists were on alert not to expect a conventional documentary on Alzheimer’s. In her first documentary, Carper, a veteran CNN medical journalist who carries the gene (ApoE4) for late onset Alzheimer’s, took an original approach. She interspersed penetrating interviews of world famous researchers with clips of vintage sci fi horror movies, including Frankenstein and Night of the Living Dead. She used the entertaining clips, she says, to drive home the message that “our exaggerated, distorted, false beliefs about Alzheimer’s have created a monster of fear and hopelessness that is more myth than reality.”
Carper confessed she had been petrified to present her film to the luminaries in the field.
“I relaxed when I heard a few of them laughing—in the right places,” she said.
After she took the stage, the first comment came from Lon White, renowned Alzheimer’s researcher at the University of Hawaii: “There are a few parts I could disagree with, but I give it 96 out of 100.”
“ I can live with that,” Carper admitted.
“I give it 100,” shouted out another unidentified researcher.
Later, several academic scientists asked Carper where they could get it to show to all their medical students. “That’s important,” said Professor Brian Balin, Ph.D, a leading researcher on dementia and infections at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.