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Documentary Corner: Sicko (2007)

Written by Film

Imagine a country where prison is the easiest way to access totally free healthcare, where because of the price of surgery you have to choose which of your fingers to save. I doubt the country in your mind is America. However, this is the truth, the truth that is documented in Michael Moore’s 2007 film Sicko. An exposé that gained him an Oscar nomination that year.

At the centre of this documentary is the people and the consequences of America’s private insurance healthcare system. The failings of this system are outlined by Moore through personal heart-breaking stories told first-hand by a range of people; both those who work for insurance companies and those who have suffered because of them. Moore’s storytelling and dark sense of humour drive this film making for an ultimately sickening shock factor.

I re-watched Sicko recently and after a difficult week for the NHS with a bill being passed meaning it’s no longer protected from privatisation, this documentary heightened my awareness of how the importance of our NHS. It terrified me the thought of losing a valued gem in our crown jewels; a system that keeps us all safe and well while not breaking the bank.

What Moore uncovers is the gluttony of American insurance company methods

Despite being now 13 years old this documentary is as relevant as ever because with the failure of Obama Care the American healthcare system is unchanged. What Moore uncovers is the gluttony of American insurance company methods that are designed to make them obese with profits while neglecting those who are most vulnerable. The American dream truly turned into the American nightmare.

Last modified: 29th October 2019

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