Tuesday, December 16, 2008

"The Accidental Advocate" delves into politics of stem cell research

A documentary called "The Accidental Advocate" looks at the politics of stem cell research through the eyes of a father and surgeon who became disabled and a daughter who is a broadcast journalist.

Here's the synopsis of the film when it was shown at a Wisconsin Academy event in November, "A Decade Celebrating Stem Cells: Changing the Face of Medicine Ten Years Later:"

The Accidental Advocate (2008) is both a feature length documentary film and the poignant story of a father and daughter committed to exploring the politics and science behind stem cell research. When surgeon and athlete Claude Gerstle suffers a bicycle accident that leaves him paralyzed from the neck down, he and his daughter, Jessica, discover hope in stem cell research. The film highlights the journey of Claude and Jessica as they track down the thinkers, crusaders, politicians, and pessimists of stem cell research in an effort to understand how the politicizing of stem cells is stalling a cure. The Accidental Advocate premiered at the Democratic and Republican convention earlier this year as part of the Impact Film Festival, a four-day event which showcased two to three socially-themed documentary and dramatic films per day and featured panel discussions with an engaging mix of filmmakers, entertainers, lawmakers, and other civic leaders.