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From Neurons to Nirvana: The Great Medicines

Canada | 2013 | 108 minutes | Oliver Hockenhull

This documentary explores the effects of mind-expanding drugs such as MDMA and LSD and their potential medicinal purposes. Interview footage, psychedelic imagery, and information from decades of studies make From Neurons to Nirvana a must-see feature.

May 24, 2014
AMC Pacific Place 11  
7:00 PM Date has passed

Director Oliver Hockenhull scheduled to attend

May 25, 2014
AMC Pacific Place 11  
1:15 PM Date has passed

Director Oliver Hockenhull scheduled to attend

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For decades, a growing number of scientists and advocates have been pushing back against one of the more entrenched taboos in western culture—our exclusion of psychedelic drugs from therapeutic treatment. Studies involving PTSD sufferers and late-stage cancer patients have shown remarkable results without presenting the debilitating side effects of conventional medicines, yet patients are denied their use and research studies on the subject are heavily discouraged. (“They want you to be on drugs,” as one speaker puts it. “They just want you to be on corporate drugs.”) Gathering a remarkably diverse selection of voices—psychiatrists and shamans, social justice workers and religious scholars, scientists who’ve studied psychedelics in the lab and anthropologists who sampled their effects first-hand in the Amazon jungles—From Neurons to Nirvana presents a side of the debate too frequently silenced. Far from a lazy “tune in, turn on, drop out” harangue, the film offers a heady exploration of the benefits, spiritual, and psychological, of pharmacological ego-shattering, as well as a reminder that the gulf between contemplating Buddha’s territory of the unconditioned mind and discussing serotonin-2 receptor activation methodology isn’t as wide as it initially seems.

Director Biography

A teacher and essayist as well as a filmmaker, Oliver Hockenhull has presented at numerous universities in Canada, the US, and Europe. His work has blended the documentary, essay, and experimental genres in such previous works as Aldous Huxley: The Gravity of Light (1996) and Evo (2002).

Sponsored by Consulate General of Canada, MOViN 92.5, Leafly

Director: Oliver Hockenhull
Premier Status: US Premiere
Country: Canada, United Kingdom
Year: 2013
Running Time: 108 minutes
Producer: Oliver Hockenhull
Editors: Oliver Hockenhull
Music: Lisa Walker
Website: Official Film Website
Filmography: Shot On Blood: Kozmikonic Electronica (Doc, 2010); Evo (Doc, 2002); Building Heaven, Remembering Earth (Doc, 1999); Aldous Huxley: The Gravity of Light (Doc, 1996); Entre la Langue et l’Océan (Doc, 1991); Determinations (1988)
Language: English
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