Mr. Louis Stanislaw is thirty-three years old independent filmmaker [a graduate of the International Film School of Paris (EICAR) and Oberlin College] opens the documentary, entitled On The Edge, starting with himself, telling the story of “how” he deals with seizures, sometimes very intimidating and frightening. He is unaware of the seizure that takes over his body and limbs in abrupt movements beyond his control until after it happens. His experience is the gateway to the rest of the film, focusing on how epilepsy affects the sufferer socially and inside one’s family, interviewing parents, siblings, co-workers and friends. Louis’ deeply moving and illuminating exposé, OTE (On The Edge), depicts what it takes to live with epilepsy and how he has coped with epilepsy his entire life, a fact that gives this film its authenticity and heart. Through his own personal lens and understanding, he brings us deep into the torment of epilepsy.
Louis’ documentary is helping to erase people’s misunderstandings about epilepsy and also give support to those who need it. Opening up a national dialogue has not been easy. This film begins to open the door, helping people to become more sympathetic and supportive to people with epilepsy, who so often have to bear their experiences alone. The program is like no other, focusing on the need to make this hidden disorder a more open topic for the society at large in the United States with its balanced exploration of epilepsy and its personal, social and cultural impact. As the producer, he has written, filmed and created On The Edge, with funds raised funds from scores of family friends and individuals, through the tax-deductible IRS approved CTC Foundation. This documentary is both personally and professionally of highest importance to him and his immediate family.
Creating the documentary entailed interviewing more than 50 patients and their families, doctors, and the public, including numerous man-on-the-street style samplings were recorded to show the range of understanding, impressions, and misconceptions regarding Epilepsy. The PBS distribution of Louis’ On The Edge is facilitating it to achieve maximum penetration of the message in his film – educationally and socially important. On The Edge also offers hope. Some of the leading specialists in the field discuss the medical and social progress we are making in the realm of epilepsy and what new treatments are now in development. And many of the people now living with epilepsy reveal how they approach – and in many cases master – the difficult issues they face every single day. The result is a film that is informative and illuminating; no one seeing it will be left unmoved. As such, On The Edge is far more than a film; it is a brave and eloquent plea for understanding, compassion, and a deeper appreciation of our common humanity.
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ON THE EDGE
IS THE CREATION OF LOUIS STANISLAW TOLD THROUGH THE STORIES OF THE DIRECTOR, EPILEPSY PATIENTS AND THEIR FAMILIES, THIS FILM DOCUMENTS THE DIFFICULTIES AND MISUNDERSTANDINGS AT EVERY TURN: FROM FAMILY LIFE TO SCHOOL AND FRIENDS, TO LEAVING HOME AND STARTING A CAREER AND FORMING LASTING BONDS.