Documentary | In English | 123 minutes | 2007
Michael Moore’s investigative documentary attempts to expose the faults of the health care system in the U.S. before the passage of the Affordable Care Act. Moore believes that the profiteering and abuses of the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries are at the heart of the problem. It’s particularly relevant today as the politicians in Washington grapple with ways to provide universal health care for everyone. Moore compares our system with the health care systems in Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and Cuba. He asks: “If it works for these countries, why not for us?” Fifty million Americans are uninsured while the remainder, who have insurance coverage, are blocked from getting full care by cumbersome red tape and, in some instances, fraud. The U.S. ranks 37 out of 191 in the World Health Organization’s survey of health care.
Why STream This Film?
- Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus) 92% 92%
- Metacritic Score 74% 74%
Los Angeles Times: 4th Best Film of the year.
The Austin Chronicle: 8th Best Film of the year.
Academy Awards: nominated for Best Documentary.
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SICKO contends that the American system of private medical insurance is a disaster. It’s the least controversial and most appealing of Mr. Moore’s movies. The film presents a simple compare-and- contrast exercise. Here is our way, and here is another way, variously applied in Canada, France, Britain, and yes, Cuba. And in doing so, Moore sets out to challenge some widely held American notions about socialized medicine.
This is Moore’s most widely accessible and least divisive documentary to date. He argues that universal health coverage should be regarded as a basic human right and strikes a resounding blow against our ingrained resistance to the idea of socialized medicine.
SICKO is Moore’s best, most focused movie to date.The movie builds its case from the ground up, with anecdotes of average Americans so cruelly abused by the system the only response is the laughter of disbelief. The system appears rigged specifically to NOT provide help to those who need it. Whatever you call his movies —agitprop, advocacy entertainment, Commie propaganda, the Truth—SICKO is built to persuade. It succeeds by making us ill with laughter and with shame.
Michael Moore does something very shrewd in SICKO. He doesn’t address his film to the 50 million Americans who don’t have health care, but to the 250 million who do. And he makes the case that tells people who have health insurance that, even if they think they’re safe, they’re not—and he shows them why. SICKO will scare people, and it probably should.
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