Director: Michael Moore
Plot: A documentary comparing the highly profitable American health care industry to other nations, and HMO horror stories.
Awards: Nom. for 1 Oscar - Best Documentary
Rating: PG for brief strong language.
IN RETROSPECT (Spoilers: N/A)
“If we can find money to kill people, you can find money to help people.”
It might be a little premature to suggest that this is the year's best documentary, but it's almost certain that Sicko will make a strong claim for a well-deserved Oscar for best documentary feature come next February. Michael Moore's resume for the past two decades has been nothing short of impressive - Roger and Me (1989), the Oscar-winning Bowling for Columbine (2002) and the Palme d’Or-winning Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004).
There are people who love his documentaries, while others have publicly criticized his works for its sensitive, at times exaggerated content. As a film enthusiast, I belong to the former group. He earns my respect as one of the world's best documentary filmmakers. While his investigative methods used may be unethical, he does well to provoke the truth.
Sicko showcases Moore in prime form. Although it's less explosive and scathing than Bowling for Columbine, Sicko is able to convey very vividly what Moore wants to expose about the US health care system - corrupted, inefficient, ineffective, and that it's inferior to Cuba's.
Socialized medicine has never caught up with the US (due to selfish political motives) despite its countless benefits as proven by its use in France and Britain. Moore digs deep into the issue, pouncing on almost every loophole and creates a storm out of it. Sometimes a little too much though.
However, his scrutiny of the US health care system is well-presented, using creative touches such as old film reels, Star Wars references etc. There are several highly-charged sequences when interviewees break down into tears while discussing their horror experiences in the hands of the American health care system.
Sicko raises plenty of questions on health policies and topples America’s credibility as a pro-human rights nation. Moore literally dissects and tears apart his nation’s health care system with Sicko. A striking piece of populist outrage and arguably the most entertaining documentary of the year, Sicko is a must-watch. Shame on the US government! Don't they even care for their own citizens?
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