If you want to stay healthy in America, don’t get sick.
Following on the heels of his controversial documentary ‘Fahrenheit 9/11’ and his Oscar winning film Bowling for Columbine, acclaimed filmmaker Michael Moore’s new documentary sets out to investigate the American health care system. Sticking to his tried-and-true one-man approach, Moore sheds light on the complicated medical affairs of individuals and local communities.
This might hurt a little.
This documentary is filled with unforgettable images such as a grieving widow whose husband died when their health insurance wouldn’t cover a bone marrow donation by the patient’s brother because they said it was “experimental.” One could not help but be moved by her tears and her statement, “I lost my best friend and my soul mate.”
Other vivid images include 9/11 rescue workers suffering from various ailments including lung disorders because of smoke inhalation and they can’t receive medical help without paying a fortune. Director Michael Moore manages to take them via boat to Cuba and they receive medical attention in Cuba for free! Americans will dislike learning that Britain, France, and Cuba have free health care and very low prescription fees when the reverse is true on our own shores. Many people already know about Canada’s similar provision. We learn that in France 65% of health care is provided by the government and 35% by employers in certain cases. One lady who paid over $100 for a prescription here got it for 5 cents in Cuba. Moore does take his usual jabs at President Bush, but he makes his case well for the need for better health care. The documentary poignantly makes the point that health care providers and insurance companies are making tons of money while some Americans are released early from hospital beds because they can’t pay their hospital bills.
This film is intelligently and rationally made and no matter your political preferences the documentary makes some strong points. However, it should be noted that the presentation is pretty much a one-sided portrayal of Moore’s view. For example, we know that some foreign countries have dealt with some problematic situations with health care. Unfortunately, there is the use of an e-mail in the film, directed to Moore, which uses the dreaded F word. When will these filmmakers start making movies without this family unfriendly word? Due to this strong language, Dove cannot approve the film as family friendly. It’s a shame.