Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Michael Moore's new movie

So Michael Moore's new movie Sicko is being favorably received in Cannes. Sicko is about how bad the American health care system sucks and why it is that we seem to like it that way. Snip from the LAT:
"I don't have to convince the American public that there is something wrong with our health care system. I think most American people already feel that way," said Moore, who enjoys great coverage himself through the Directors Guild of America. "That's why I don't spend a lot of time in the film on the healthcare horror stories. I wanted to propose that there's a different way we can go with this. I'm hoping that the American people, when they see this film, will say, 'You know, there is a better way, and maybe we should look at what they are doing in some of these other countries..."

I appreciate Moore's viewpoint, but not his confrontational approach. I didn't see Fahrenheit 911, not because I think the present war is good public policy, but because I think instead of starting a conversation at the political center, the movie just added to the shouting match already in progress between the people at the fringes. So when I heard that Moore was making a movie about an issue that affects me deeply in a very personal way (which is not to suggest that I consider terrorism/war/foreign policy/everything else to be a garnish on the garnish of our great political ham), I was nervous, even though I'm all for single-payer and figure he is, too.

The LAT reports, however, that Moore has, in Sicko, forgone some of the confrontational episodes that marked his other films. Snip:
"When people say there is no confrontation in this movie, to me there is a big confrontation in this movie," Moore said in an interview here. "Because I am confronting the American audience with a question: 'Who are we, and what has happened to our soul?' To me, that's maybe more confrontation than going after the CEO of Aetna or the CEO of Pfizer." The reason Moore feels compelled to ask this "Sicko" question is because, he feels, the country unthinkingly settles for substandard and ruinously expensive medical treatment, especially when compared with countries with universal healthcare.

I'm looking forward to seeing Sicko, but mostly, I'm looking forward to an invigorated popular conversation about the issue. Hold the chest-poking, though, please.

1 comment:

Stephen said...

moore is always good for a good time, if only for the hub-ub in the press about his efforts. i hopehe doesn't become a parody of himself. maybe he'll do a movie about multiple sclerosis?