Can a Man (and a Bug) Drive Out Suicide? a short suicide awareness film

Can a Man (and a Bug) Drive Out Suicide?


A MAN, A BUG and A MISSION is a short film that documents the first leg of OC87 Recovery Diaries’ Editor in Chief Gabriel Nathan’s ambitious road trip to raise suicide awareness and prevention.  Using Herbie as the conversation catalyst, Gabe recently left his hometown of Philadelphia to embark on a journey up the East Coast, where he recorded interactions with every day folk, including politicians, first responders, suicide loss survivors and attempt survivors, clinicians—about mental, suicide prevention, and, yes, how this special Love Bug fits in to that discussion.

Gabe’s family has been touched by suicide—his aunt (his father’s sister) Rena Nathan, died by suicide. Gabe he has made it his life’s mission to spread awareness about prevention. He is a board member of Prevent Suicide PA, and his car is branded with the number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK), part of Prevent Suicide PA’s #driveoutsuicide initiative.

Please enjoy this engaging preview of his adventure, which documents Gabe’s departure. The night before he leaves, he has a touching interview with his father about their family’s loss. The morning of departure, he is given blessings (and some strong tech support!) by his wife, Abi, and his sweet children. He is also given a special send off by his dear friend Stephanie, who shares some very wise words of reflection about her personal journey losing her mother to suicide.

Gabe has had a long and successful relationship with Herbie, as we’ve documented in this OC87 Recovery Diaries feature. This road trip seems to artfully blend his two passions. As Gabe explains, “There’s a scene in The Love Bug where Herbie tries to throw himself off the Golden Gate Bridge. And I knew I had to use Herbie for suicide prevention He’s the only car in motion picture history that tries to kill himself.”

Part road trip, part interview documentary, part introspective diary, A Man, A Bug and a Mission is a delicious teaser for the full-length film, which is currently in post-production. This heartfelt video captures Gabe’s unique blend of warmth, understanding, humor and compassion. He and Herbie make a disarmingly charming couple, as they seek truth and spread hope (and important prevention information) up the East Coast. 

EDITOR IN CHIEF: Gabriel Nathan | EDITOR: Glenn Holsten | DESIGN: Leah Alexandra Goldstein | PUBLISHER: Bud Clayman

See Related Recovery Stories: Mental Health Short Films

Glenn is an award-winning director who loves to create compelling documentary story experiences of all lengths for screens of all sizes. He is an avid reader, studied literature in college, and his passion for stories with strong characters and interesting narratives stems from those years. His career as a visual storyteller began at WHYY (the public television station in Philadelphia) where he worked for 15 years before becoming an independent filmmaker. In addition to his PBS documentaries about arts and culture, he has directed films about justice and human rights, and now, mental health. He was emboldened to undertake his current documentary project, Hollywood Beauty Salon, a colorful feature-length documentary about surviving mental illness and finding the courage for recovery, after his transformative experience directing OC87: The Obsessive Compulsive, Major Depression, Bipolar, Asperger’s Movie, along with Bud Clayman and Scott Johnston.