Sicko Movie Review Assignment

Sicko Movie Review Assignment

Sicko Review

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Can you imagine going to the doctor and leaving without owing him any money? Can you envision a time when you had no healthcare insurance, yet didn’t have to worry about something major happening to you and how you would pay for it? Free healthcare for everyone is not a statement Americans have ever heard. In the movie Sicko Michael Moore takes a look at what is wrong with our healthcare system. He also takes a look at how some other countries that have been said to have some of the best healthcare in the world have approached healthcare in their country. Michael Moore has almost a sarcastic approach to his film making.

He is a good at painting these pictures of healthcare not only ours here in the United States but also what other countries have. The film really makes people ask questions about our system of healthcare. I know after watching this movie I asked; why have we in America not gone to some sort of healthcare plan takes care of everyone? In the movie Sicko Michael Moore attempts to show us that universal healthcare is flawless and is successful because he doesn’t include all information. I would like to show you some of the information that he left out. however, even with this information I still think that some sort of universal healthcare system would be beneficial to the United States.

In this documentary, the director/writer Michael Moore exposes the dysfunctional North American health care system, oriented to huge profits and not for their mission of saving lives. Further, he shows the corruption in the political system, with members of government and congress “bought” by the corporations and the situation of the average American citizens, including those that volunteered to work in the rescue mission of the September 11th. Then he travels to Canada, Great Britain and France to compare their systems showing their hospital, doctors, staffs and patients. Last but not the least, he shows that the prisoners in Guantanamo have better medical treatment than the common people in USA, and he ends getting free treatment to the Americans that participate along the documentary in Cuba. Sicko Movie Review Assignment


The roots of those health care systems are explored, and our failure to establish free health here care is traced to a) President Richard Nixon’s deceptive support of the then-emerging HMOs pursuing huge profits and b) subsequent pressures for Congress to sacrifice sound health care in favor of corporate profit. A group of Americans who became ill from volunteering at 911 Ground Zero, but were refused health coverage for their illnesses, are ferried by Moore to Cuba, where they receive the top-rate, free care one would hope they’d get here at home. In his interviews, historical reportage, and typical sarcastic wit, Moore soundly condemns American health insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies, as well as the politicians who have been paid millions to do their bidding.

He makes the case that there is something wrong with Americans that we cannot learn from the successes of other countries in providing better quality-of-health than we enjoy in the USA. After offering some brief glimpses of the hell inhabited by those with no health coverage at all—the film opens on a guy stitching up his own slashed knee, then visits a man who had to choose which finger he could afford to keep after a table-saw accident—Moore states that this isn’t a movie about them, or their nearly 50 million uninsured compatriots.

Instead, he’s chosen to focus on Americans who have insurance and find themselves screwed up the yin-yang anyway. This is a wise choice from a rhetorical point of view, because by exploring the dilemmas faced by those who have shoveled out premiums for decades, Moore can show that our status quo doesn’t just have a few soft spots—it’s rotten to the core. To give away too much about these people’s stories would undermine one of the film’s great strengths: the quiet dignity with which the subjects tell their tales themselves. Babies dying on the ride between the nearest hospital and the nearest in-network alternative. Spouses dying of cancer because the HMO deemed lifesaving procedures too “experimental” to try. (Isn’t that the whole point of being experimental?) Moore listens to these stories without undue editorializing—for all his bullying of those in power (and, occasionally, the audience), he’s a soft touch as an interviewer.

It’s during the movie’s finale, when Moore takes a boatful of sick Americans to Guantanamo Bay in search of free health care, when the deck gets stacked high enough to wobble a little. I don’t begrudge him the prank, or the visual gag of shouting “Can we get some medical care?” through a megaphone—I confess to be a sucker for this kind David-and-Goliath political theater. But when Moore gives up on the prison and herds his flock, including three ailing 9/11 rescue workers, through the streets of Havana, his tone becomes almost reverent. An old Irving Berlin tune about the wonders of this tropical island paradise plays on the soundtrack—ostensibly ironically, but Moore seems to take it at face value. The scenes in a Cuban hospital, where the sick Americans tearfully thank their kind caregivers, are the only ones in the film that feel staged. I wish Moore could realize that he doesn’t need to disavow dissenting ideas in order to build his (essentially airtight) case.

In conclusion even after looking over some of the facts and figures of how much money other countries pay in taxes. I get in debates with my step father about how much control the government should really have. At this point I would rather have the government in control of healthcare than the for-profit health insurance companies. Have you ever heard the saying you get what you pay for? In this country we get what we pay for, very little. We do have some of the lowest overall tax burdens. Personally, I would like to pay a little more and get a little more, assuming that we would get more. If I had access to healthcare that would never be taken away from me and any other helpful social services I do not think I would really miss that money every year.


Schiappa, E., & Horvath, D. L. (2015). and Peter B. Gregg. Michael Moore and the Rhetoric of Documentary, 119.

Sicko Movie Review Assignment

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