The Greater Good (film)
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|The Greater Good|
|Directed by||Kendall Nelson, Chris Pilaro|
|Produced by||Leslie Manookian Bradshaw|
|Written by||Leslie Manookian Bradshaw, Jack Youngelson|
|Starring||Gabi Swank, Jordan King, and the Christeners|
|Music by||Stephen Thomas Cavit|
The Greater Good is a controversial film about vaccines. It debuted at the Dallas International Film Festival on April 2, 2011, and began playing in Los Angeles, California on October 14, 2011. Well-known vaccine experts who appear in the film include Paul Offit, Melinda Wharton, and Norman Baylor of the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. The film was endorsed by controversial doctor Joseph Mercola on his website, as part of "Vaccine Awareness Week", a joint venture with the anti-vaccine organization National Vaccine Information Center.
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The film covers three stories which are said to be examples of vaccine harm:
- Gabi Swank of Wichita, Kansas, who received a HPV vaccine and attributes a number of adverse reactions, including a seizure, to this vaccine,
- Jordan King of Portland, Oregon, who was said to have regressed into autism following routine vaccination, and was one of the test cases for the autism omnibus proceedings, a case which was rejected by the Special Master, and
- Victoria Grace Boyd Christener of Tulsa, Oklahoma, who died at the age of 5 months after receiving her childhood vaccines.
According to the film's website, the following mix of 'leading authorities in vaccines and vaccine safety' and those who 'ask probing questions about regulation and administration' are featured in the film.
- Dr. Paul Offit an American pediatrician specializing in infectious diseases and an expert on vaccines, immunology, and virology.
- Dr. Melinda Wharton of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
- Dr. Norman Baylor, Director of the Office of Vaccines Research and Review in the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.
- Mark B. Feinberg, Vice President for Medical Affairs and Policy for Merck Vaccines and Infectious Diseases at Merck & Company, Inc.
- Walt Orenstein, who formerly held a post at the Centers for Disease Control where he led the National Immunization Program.
- Dr. Stanley Plotkin, A vaccine inventor and an advisor at Sanofi Pasteur.
- Dr. Lawrence B. Palevsky, Co-founder and President of the Holistic Pediatric Association.
- Kevin P. Conway, A vaccine-compensation lawyer.
- Renee Gentry, A lawyer.
- Diane Harper, an investigator at one of the sites where the original clinical trials of Gardasil was conducted.
- Kevin Conway and Clifford Shoemaker, lawyers who represented the families in the autism omnibus trial, where the claim that vaccines cause autism was assessed and rejected as unfounded.
- Barbara Loe Fisher, co-founder and president of the National Vaccine Information Center, an anti-vaccine nonprofit.
- Bob Sears, a doctor promoting alternative vaccine schedules.
- Dr. John Green.
- Dr. Christopher Shaw, a Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at the University of British Columbia whose research focuses on neurological disease.
The conjecture presented in the movie that vaccines might cause autism is contradicted by all existing scientific evidence on the subject.
The New York Times criticized the movie, calling it "emotionally manipulative," and "heavily partial."
Variety's John Anderson reviewed the film, saying that it is "swimming in ethical contradictions." Anderson also stated, with regard to the film's potential bias, "Admittedly, it would have been difficult for the filmmakers to show the other side of those scenes; how do you focus on subjects who haven’t died from smallpox, diphtheria or pertussis because they were immunized as children? But that would require an approach that doesn’t take advantage of the audience’s emotions."
David Gorski criticized the movie in a blog post, lamenting that the film "which could have been a provocative debate about current vaccine policy based on asking which vaccines are necessary and why, in the end opts to be nothing more than pure anti-vaccine propaganda of the lowest and most vile sort."
Gary Goldstein described the film as "provocative" and "an effective eye-opener."
- Main Characters
- Gorski, David. "The Greater Good: Pure, unadulterated anti-vaccine propaganda masquerading as a "balanced" documentary". Science Based Medicine.
- Film Seeks to Spur ‘Rational Discussion’ On Vaccine Safety
- The Greater Good at IMDB
- Anti-vaccine propaganda lands in New York City this weekend
- "Experts in the Film". The Greater Good Website. Retrieved 31 July 2013.
- Doja, A.; Roberts, W. (November 2006). "Immunizations and autism: a review of the literature". Canadian Journal of Neurological Sciences. 33 (4): 341–346. Archived from the original on 2013-07-31.
- The Fight Over Vaccines and Autism, Continued
- The Greater Good: Variety
- The Greater Good: Pure, unadulterated anti-vaccine propaganda masquerading as a "balanced" documentary
- Goldstein, Gary (14 October 2011). "Movie review: 'Greater Good'". Los Angeles Times.
- Ferdman, Veronika (13 October 2011). "The Greater Good Review". LA Weekly.
- The Greater Good
- 2011 Amsterdam Film Festival Announces Awards