A Film By Lise Zumwalt
In 2011, Eric, diagnosed schizophrenic, faced a critical choice - whether to comply with traditional mental health treatment or follow his own path to wellness. Eric’s doctors want to medicate him for his own protection...but after eight years of psych meds, Eric wants to refuse drugs he believes may harm him.
With extraordinary access, CRAZY explores both sides of the story. Eric, his father and his attorney argue passionately for Eric’s right to make his own medical decisions. Depositions of the county’s evaluating psychologist and social worker show us how and why they feel forced treatment is necessary. An observant camera enables us to witness the unpredictable and high stakes trajectory of Eric’s journey; his decision to refuse meds, his appeal in court to use an advanced directive, being locked on a psych floor after being picked up by police, hiding out in a downtown hotel, being taken away to a state mental hospital, deteriorating during a family therapy session, but finally, also, the solution that eventually enables Eric to graduate from college and claim the recovery and a measure of the autonomy he so desperately craves.
THE FILMMAKER: Lise Zumwalt has produced, written and edited films for NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TELEVISION, PBS, WNET, BBC, NBC, THE HISTORY CHANNEL and the DISCOVERY CHANNEL on series including NATURE, NOVA, WIDE ANGLE, WHO CARES ABOUT GIRLS, AMERICAN INVESTIGATIVE REPORTS & LOCKDOWN and has won 14 awards for her work. CRAZY is Lise’s first feature project.