Contributed photo Filmmaker Laurent Goldstein said he wants to inspire audiences to overcome personal obstacles and pursue their passions.

A matter of attitude

Filmmaker Laurent Goldstein’s inspirational documentaries strike a chord with Peninsula audiences

Documentary filmmaker Laurent Goldstein needn’t wonder whether he is connecting with his audience on the Semiahmoo Peninsula.

In fact, White Rock and South Surrey, with its mature-yet-active demographic, is becoming like a second home for the French-born, Vancouver-based entrepreneur and his production company, Citrus Pie Media Group.

The second White Rock screening of his documentary Your Second Fifty: Rising Above The Fears of Aging – scheduled for Blue Frog Studios this Monday (Nov. 5) – is already sold out.

Blue Frog is also booked for a Dec. 11 screening of a second Citrus Pie feature production, To Life, Death and Beyond: The Music of Magma – a tribute to a legendary French progressive rock band that, though formed almost 50 years ago, is still performing concerts, and exerting a worldwide influence today.

A new film, Chronic Pain: On a Scale of One to Ten, while “about three months away from completion,” is also likely to have an early screening at the venue following a planned premiere at Vancouver’s VanCity Theatre at either the end of February or the beginning of March, Goldstein said.

Local reaction to the latest screening of Your Second Fifty has been a welcome vote of confidence, Goldstein said, but not too surprising, considering the resonance it has found with an early-senior audience around the province.

“We have done around seven or eight screenings this year,” he said. “Our typical venues have been in the 300- to 350-seat range, and we’ve been getting 70 to 80 per cent houses.”

Local ticket holders to the event – sponsored by Wellnessnews, Choices Markets and South Surrey Chiropractic and Wellness – will also participate in a post-screening question-and-answer panel with counselling and wellness experts Diane Lee, Jen Hammersmark, Trevor Mains, Timothy Brown, Patrick Lum and Sarah Cohen.

Goldstein said that those who haven’t booked tickets have another chance to see the film in Fort Langley’s Chief Sepass Theatre on Jan. 16.

The “live-inspired” message of the film, based on a best-seller by author and speaker Frank Moffat, is that chronological milestones, such as a 50th or 60th birthday, don’t have to be seen as “the beginning of the end.”

Featuring experts on aging such as Dr. Bruce Lipton, Dr. Daniel Amen, Dr. John Demartini, and David Wolfe – as well as celebrities Naomi Judd, Bruce Allen, Arielle Ford and Aurora Winter – it avers that, depending largely on mental attitude, such milestones can actually be seen as doorways to peak, productive years in our lives.

The importance of attitude is a central theme in Goldstein’s work – also not too surprising for a 63-year-old who successfully reinvented himself and rediscovered his passion for film, after an earlier business, marketing software to chiropractors, crashed as a result of the 2008 recession.

But he’s aware that, while successful, Your Second Fifty is a three-year-old film.

“It’s getting a good reaction, but we can’t keep going forever with that – it’s a little scary.”

But he’s excited that the follow-up, Chronic Pain, is nearing completion, particularly since so many people, especially those entering their senior years, are dealing with it on a daily basis in their lives.

“In the new film, the emphasis is on nutrition,” Goldstein said, adding that it includes interviews with many leading international experts.

“It looks at the importance of a plant-based diet, but also at things like medical cannabis, sensory deprivation, float tanks and sound and light therapy.

“Today, with what we know of biology, the idea is, well, you don’t have to take what you have been told by a medical doctor – that you’re just going to have to live with that. We don’t need to take that for granted, we don’t need to skip things that you have to do, by accepting the status quo.”

By the same token, Goldstein said, the film is not out to dump on traditional medicine.

“The traditional medical approach is amazing when it comes to curing (sickness),” he said.

“But when it comes to chronic conditions, it’s not equipped for that. The underlying causes are much more complex, and could have roots in psychological stress, for instance. It’s not just a matter of getting a prescription for Tylenol 3’s. We need to look outside the box and look at new practices and new ways of thinking.”

The theme of attitude is also expressed in Goldstein’s documentary on Magma, he said – particularly in tracing the story of the band’s leader, classically trained drummer Christian Vander, who overcame huge obstacles in life to create an incredibly sophisticated vision – including a unique musical style that has spawned its own genre, an extra-terrestrial back story and a mythical language.

And it’s not hard to see an inspirational message in it that fits well with Goldstein’s other projects.

“We want to encourage people to create their own reality – to take their lives into their own hands,” he said.

For more information, visit www.citruspiemg.com

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