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THE 2023 ATLANTA FILM FESTIVAL, SNEAK PEEK SCREENING OF 'MY LAST NERVE'

Q&A SESSION FEATURING: ALANA GOLDSTEIN, MAX GLANZ, AND ADAM LABRIE


Friday, April 28th, 2023


'My Last Nerve' stole the spot light at a special sneak peek screening at the Plaza Theatre Friday night and received a standing ovation from badge holders and filmmakers alike. After the screening, the subject of the film Max, and the filmmakers had an opportunity to speak with the audience about the message and goals behind the film. The ATLFF moderator sat down with (from left to right), Alana Goldstein, Director of Development at Crazy Legs Productions and Producer of the film, Max Glanz, and the Director, Adam LaBrie. Adam is Max's first cousin and 'My Last Nerve' is his directorial debut.


Moderator:

Max, we watched you bet on yourself so many times over the course of a decade. How does it feel to be that much closer to your goal after betting on yourself so many times?


Max Glanz:

For me, I would say that the way I look at things is kind of with blinders on. So you have a mission. You have to accomplish the mission. And well, you know, there's a saying, I learned this in the military from the mentors you saw on the screen there that if you have an objective in front of you an obstacle, there's three ways to get through it: over, under or through. So, this was a natural progression. I kind of realized that in life, if you throw enough sh*& against the wall, something will stick. And the things that don't stick are kind of just the natural guides that dictate where you shouldn't have been, where you didn't belong. So, it took a lot of no’s to get to the right channels.


I think the clarity that I had in seeing what it took to make this happen really came from General Nagata, who you see a few times throughout the film. When he asked me the question, "do you understand why the special operations community was so embracing the view and, and your attitude?" And he's like, "it's because you're relentless." That's when it kind of became clear to me that you just are given things that you don't understand why you're given those tasks until many years after the fact. So I don't really look at where I'm at as I'm not really necessarily proud per se because the job's not done. I try to stay grounded. My dad's still suffering every single day. My competition is the enzyme that's dysfunctional, that's causing this torture nonstop. So, I feel very fortunate in that life has given me these opportunities to learn things that most people, quite frankly, don't learn until they're really on their deathbed.


And I, I wouldn't say I have no regrets. I refer to it as the dealer's day, which is the day when you know you're dealt the deck of cards and you don't get to control what carts you're dealt. All you can do is play the hand the best you can, the best, and you know this is just me playing the hand and you get a shitty turn and then you just try to make something of it. And then you just keep using that to figure out where you need to belong. And that approach has just led me to find the people that have really been a part of this journey that have helped me get to where I am. And now I'm very fortunate, honored to say that the team of Crazy Legs and High Water Productions, with this project are very much a part of that journey now.


Moderator:

Alana, talk about what it was like to watch him bet on himself so many times and get up to, and to document it this way.


Alana Goldstein:

I mean, how many people have seen a problem and dedicated their whole life to fixing it? We see problems every day and 2020 showed us a lot of problems in our society. And most of the time we feel fairly paralyzed by those problems. And when we heard Max's journey up until the time where we got involved, we're like, here's this guy who's doing something every single day. He wakes up and does something to further his cause to fix the problem. And that's such a unique person that actually can do that and can stick with it year after year. And yes, it's a personal, it's personal for him because it's his father, but that's a rare person that can really do that, that can stick with that problem, and try and solve it. And that's the reason we wanted to tell his story.


A scientific story like this is not an easy story to tell in a film. It's also a complicated story. Most people who have taken some college courses have a hard time keeping up with his scientific journey, but the human story of trying to fix a problem and dedicating your life to fixing that is a worthwhile story to tell.


Moderator:

Adam, I'd like to know since completing this film, are you still following Max's journey? Is there going to be like a part two to what we see here today? How are you documenting it moving forward?


Adam LaBrie:

I will try to keep doing updates because this is an ongoing story and I think that's one of the appeals of it, is that it's not all said and done and completely retrospective. We're in the midst of it. And I think even when I started following Max's story four or five years ago, I knew that a lot of the story was yet to unfold, but I also knew that what he had already accomplished was movie worthy. I think he's [Max] is sitting up here very humble today, but I just want to reiterate the fact that no world-renowned specialist could even think of the process of how to figure out the first step, which is what is causing Jon's disease, which is step one before you can even figure out how to solve it.


There’s still a lot to be told and as far as a part two, we'll see where the story goes, but there's definitely a lot that's yet to be done. Like Max said, this is kind of just the beginning where it's taken him 10, 12 years to actually get in a position with the resources and the mentors that he has in place to really now have a lot of momentum behind him. And that was kind of my goal with the film, is to just add to that momentum and get more people on his side. And obviously funding is, is a major issue with independent science, especially when you're focus focusing on specialized medicine. So it's all kind of will hopefully work towards that cause.


Moderator:

Alana, as the producer max mentioned that from watching this, he wants to change the minds of how doctors handle patients, which is an ongoing conversation. How do you see this film rolling out to make that it gets to the people that needs to see this?


Alana Goldstein:

We're just at the beginning of the journey to finding distribution for this film and I hope that it gets to people who need to see it. I think like Max's journey of finding funding for his science and finding mentors, I think filmmakers are in a similar position when they tell more niche stories. And we are dedicated to finding a home for this film so that as many people can see it as possible


Something that Max said that I want to highlight is that we are all mortal. We are all going to have suffering in our life and we are all going to experience the challenges of medical science. And whether your father or your loved one has a rare disease - this story is a universal story. And I think we all know that the insurance and the pharmaceutical companies are not really looking out for the interests of us as individuals or as a population and films like this will help bring that to light. We all know that the pharmaceutical companies are making money off of the backs of people who are suffering and so stories like this are important to get out there because without people like Max or without people who want to solve problems we're really just at the whim of, of big multinational corporations who are not going to be helping us. And so we're going to find a home for it come hell or high water.

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1 Comment


Damning pharmaceutical companies or making them feel guilty is not going to help your cause.  Just as an epidemic is cured by one patient at a time, the business side of pharmaceutical companies don’t need to consider each individual, since the medication is basically the same for everyone with that specific disease or illness.  This would not only be an unreasonable request, it’s also very inefficient way to spend time and resources.


To say pharmaceutical companies are making millions off of the backs of people who are suffering is a bit profound.  What is wrong with a pharmaceutical company making a profit, while providing a very important service?  Do we not put a high value on medications, which have helped…


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