Movie of the Day – Sicko
July 30, 2012 Leave a comment
I am not doing this post to make a political statement or trying to drum up some kind of heated discussion on the topic of healthcare in America. I mean if people want to talk about it in the comments section, please feel free to do so. What I am wanting to talk about today is a solid documentary film, that is what I want to do and maybe some personal commentary. No matter what Michael Moore does, he always has his detractors. Whether they launch into the man and his weight problem, call him ultra-liberal or disparage his films as being one-sided and sensational, I got to give him some credit with his skills in terms of getting us to talk about the issues. It might be far too left leaning for me (I don’t affiliate with Democrat or Republican parties) at times, but you got to appreciate that this individual is going out and tackling the things that matter most to Americans and bringing it to light. That is what a good documentary is, even if there is an agenda behind it, the mechanics and themes resonate.
Activist filmmaker Michael Moore turns his attentions toward the topic of health care in the United States in this documentary that weighs the plight of the uninsured (and the insured who must deal with abuse from insurance companies) against the record-breaking profits of the pharmaceutical industry. Moore interviews a number of people who have been left broke by medical bills even though they were fully insured, and explains how the corporate drive for profits has left numerous people in financial and medical disarray. After hearing that detainees in Guantanamo have access to free health care, Moore assembles a group of World Trade Center rescue workers to travel to Cuba in order to get the medical help they need for ailments they incurred in 2001. ~ Perry Seibert, Rovi
Whether you love or hate the man, you can’t deny the information he presents in this documentary. He has in the past been accused of altering information or telling half truths, which documentaries with agendas have done in the past, but the information and topic isn’t something that we can just dismiss. Moore takes his in your face approach to the spring on unsuspecting members of congress or even those in the healthcare industry that aren’t painted in the best light. The constant string of no comments and interviews start to build the negative goodwill against those that control our healthcare. It might just seem like a one man crusade or lynch party, but what he talks about is very real and very serious.
A lot of times Moore’s documentaries are considered propaganda to the highest degree. Constantly barraging us with information against the subject or being a one-sided argument. I think that he somehow toes the line between being sensationalist and being earnest about his topics. I know what I am getting into with his documentary films, but the information and ride are enough for me to be drawn into his well crafted films. Scenes of everyday people being dicked over the insurance companies isn’t just meant to draw sympathy, but is a means to show the underlying problem in our system. Drumming up statistics about the quality of our care and how many people aren’t getting the care isn’t just a means to vilify the system, but a way to show the people how far off we are from getting the help we need.
All the little Moore touches might be a bit too much, the cavalcade of sob stories or even the increasingly liberal rhetoric of railing against the Republicans that screw us over. Moore find areas on both sides of the table, one being more crowded than the other, to get his message across in the most daring way possible. When terrorists and detainees are getting the sort of healthcare that we dream of, that’s a problem. When millions of citizens are being denied coverage because they have a pre-existing condition, that’s a problem. When the cost of being healthy means you go bankrupt, that’s a problem. This isn’t something to hide from the people and I enjoy that Moore goes out to get his message across in the most radical way possible. Sometimes, people don’t pay attention to you unless you do something outrageous and daring. Sicko should be the type of movie that you take with a grain of salt, but the message and problems he brings up to us over the course of two hours isn’t to be ignored.
*images via RottenTomatoes