Jonathan Wolfman's Blog
MAY 26, 2012 6:38AM

NY Times Reviews My Student's Film Abt His Mental Illness

Rate: 18 Flag




Still photo, Bud Clayman, at City Hall, Philadelphia, from his film, "OC87".


      I've shared here that my former student (and Open Salon member), Bud Clayman, made an extraordinary, award-winning film about his decades-over-decades struggle to come to terms with and to overcome a complex of mental illnesses.

     Bud's film, OC87, opened in New York City yesterday to terrific critical acclaim.

     The film may be seen in Manhattan at the Village East Cinema. 

     Here are quick-takes from The Huffington Post and from National Public Radio, followed by the full New York Times review. It has garnered numbers of terrific write-ups.

(And, as I told you well back, I'm in the film...for abt two (2) full minutes -- bc after high school Bud needed a place to stay so I invited him to stay at my place and he did for a few years--. Stardom, Here I Come!)

And here's a link to my own interview with Bud Clayman about the film.

Bud Clayman: “An Extreme Makeover” | Talking Writing


"A remarkable achievement for the filmmaker… a film of surprising intimacy." - Huffington Post


"In OC87  [Clayman] represents a group of people who are rarely offered any media exposure, and he comes bearing a message of hope rather than just a sob story. He has something valuable to offer, even as we wish there were more like him on screen."  - National Public Radio
You can hear the complete NPR/'All Things Considered" interview with Bud at
The film's website:


Movie Review

Filmmaker Puts His Mental Illness on Screen


“This is not a film about hand washing,” says Bud Clayman at the start of “OC87,” adding, “It’s a film about the fear of acting on thoughts.” Mr. Clayman has obsessive-compulsive disorder — specifically “harm O.C.D.,” which involves intense anger and violent imaginings — and Asperger’s syndrome, which inhibits the grasp of social cues. This moving, penetrating documentary records his attempt to describe his conditions, confront them and learn to manage them.

Mr. Clayman, who experienced depression in high school, studied radio, film and video production at Temple University, and moved to Los Angeles after graduation, only to suffer a breakdown. (The title comes from 1987, when he had his darkest hour, a withdrawal from human interaction.) For eight years he lived at Project Transition, a therapeutic community in Pennsylvania, to receive treatment. In “OC87” he retraces those steps, and visits his parents, psychologists, an actor on “General Hospital” with bipolar disorder, and a San Francisco news anchor with O.C.D.

“My O.C.D. tells me that I must control every thought and every action perfectly,” Mr. Clayman says.

We get vivid, subjective glimpses into his mind-set, feeling his unease as he walks down a street, his struggle in a diner to gauge the proper length of time for, say, glancing at someone. (Less attention is paid to Asperger’s; we must wait for that definitive video diary.)

On camera Mr. Clayman has a tentative and preoccupied mien, but he is persistent in reaching for self-improvement. And there is change: his squalid apartment is made over; he speed-dates; he participates (impressively) during karaoke. He also laughs, interacts, expresses gratitude and tries hard to listen closely to others. His problems often seem like agonizingly exaggerated versions of everyone’s. We can learn from his solutions.



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If you live in the NYC area, you're in for a treat if you see this. I'll let you know when it goes national.
awesome! Been following this journey via let us know when it heads west! Thanks Jon!
Muse I sure will. And I gotta say it's terrific to see you here once again!
I knew you'd make it in Hollywood. Congrats to your friend and I hope it can get nation-wide, hell, world-wide, exposure.
Scanner it did win an award overseas!
Bud Clayman sounds like a courageous man. This movie is a real public service.
A heart wrenching story that needed to be told. Not everyone is born perfect or close to it.. every family has has members with some illness or "issues".. it's good to get them out of the closet.
How proud you must be.
Recovery, I told him, is active; it isn’t waiting for your illness to subside.

This is why I admire you, Jon. And kudos to Buddy for showing us his vivaciousness for life through film and writing.
yay thanks; yes...I hope this serves to open doors.
B. Is IS an active peocess. Y E S .
Proud to know you both. Jon what a good friend you are.
Bud....great job. Wish I lived in NYC....(for a day or two).
Hope it wins a zillion awards.
Ande when it gets to Boston of even north of...I'll let you know!
This sounds fascinating. I will check it out asap. Good work, Jon,and Bud.
Fernsy I hope you'll be able to see it!
How thrilling! Can hardly wait for its release here in our area!
You are justifiably proud of Bud. Well done by you both.
Congratulations to Bud! Thanks for sharing his film here, Jonathan. :)
Jon, You might mention that the movie is available on Netflix. I just added it to my list. My daughter will be overjoyed to hear of this. As a mental health social worker, she has long advocated for normalizing the general public's views of people with mental health issues. She contends it is like any other chronic illness. Those who learn to manage their illness can live as normal lives asany of the rest of us do.
Jon, this is an amazing story and I imagine it will be not be long before the film is available in DVD format so a wider audience can watch it and see Bud's story firsthand. It's no easy feat to make a film, but to make a film when you're dealing with a lot of issues of a personal nature is really something to write home about, as they say. Wonderful to see how you were such a major part of this!
Fascinating, Jon. Kudos to Bud and to you. I look forward to seeing the film.
Please let us know when its available outside of NY. I would love to see this fascinating story. Thanks Jonathan. Does Bud write under his own name here on OS?
Please let us know when its available outside of NY. I would love to see this fascinating story. Thanks Jonathan. Does Bud write under his own name here on OS?
Tril Bud hasn't yet written here tho yes, I'll ket all here know whan it's playing more broadly. Thanks!
Mazel tov on your nachus and stardom
Jonathan, I was touched. this line in particular struck a chord - He also laughs, interacts, expresses gratitude and tries hard to listen closely to others. Me too. thanks for letting us know about him.
How proud it must make you to know you made a contribution to someone who is making such a wonderful difference for so many. I'll watch for his film to come my way. Congrats to both of you!
i never listen to this item.