Skip Moore's "Sicko" This Weekend

Posted: Jul 20, 2007 11:36 AM
Skip Moore's "Sicko" This Weekend

I strongly believe that if I’m going to be able to participate in a dialogue about a controversial book, tv show, or movie, I should actually read the book or watch the show so I actually know what I’m talking about.

I’ve now suffered through no less than three Michael Moore films. I cringed as “Bowling for Columbine” showcased the portly filmmaker’s attack on the Second Amendment. I shook my head in disgust as “Fahrenheit 911” smeared the American soldier by portraying him as a mindless killing machine, too stupid to keep from serving his country.

But for “Sicko”, Moore’s supposed expose’ of the U.S. health care system, well, it was all I could do to keep from falling asleep.

In fact, my wife informs me that for a couple of minutes I actually did nod off (much to her chagrin).

Allow me to sum up this alleged “masterpiece” of documentary filmmaking with a few words to describe it: Dry. Slow. Humorless. Whiny. Condescending. Propaganda. Inane. Tedious. Sophomoric. Dumb.

This is one really awful movie.

I’m a pretty easy moviegoer. It really doesn’t take a lot to keep me entertained. And I’ve been intrigued by the theme generated by Moore’s “Sicko” that Democrats and Republicans can come together on this one, that universal health care is something we should all embrace with open arms.

So I went into the movie theatre with my box of popcorn prepared to at least be stimulated somewhat by the muckraking Moore, at least enough to get a rise out of me like his other two pieces of garbage did.

No such luck. This movie isn’t so much about our health care practices as it is a love letter to the wonderful cultures and customs of Great Britain, France and -- I’m not kidding -- Cuba.

Just like he exploited Columbine shooting victims and military recruiters in his other films, Moore somehow finds it compelling to herd a bunch of sick people on a couple of boats and go from Miami to Guantanamo Bay to try and get medical treatment. His infantile point: if terrorists can get universal health care for free, why not a bunch of sick 9/11 rescue workers?

I’m sure the Weinsteins gave him a big budget and all, but really, Michael, you didn’t need to charter boats. Taking buses to the nearest federal prison would have given you the same outcome.

This is a man so totally enamored with the concept of universal health care that he literally puts Hillary up on the screen and describes her as “smart” and “sexy.”

Hillary Clinton, sex symbol. Maybe the critics who called “Sicko” wildly funny were right.

And that’s not hyperbole. I know I wasn’t hallucinating when I saw a number of reviewers rave about the humor in this movie. One of them even called it “Moore’s funniest movie yet!”

I’d love to put a hundred people in a room and force them to watch this ragged film and actually count how many laughs it generates. Unless you tend to roll in the aisles when George Bush is shown stumbling a bit during a speech (a tired old Moore “technique”), the only noise you’ll hear from the audience is proverbial cricket chirping.

Picture, if you will, this scene: Michael Moore sitting in a French restaurant with a bunch of snotty yuppie Americans who love living in Paris. They love France because of its universal health care. This small group brags of being treated often at doctor’s offices and hospitals for free. Moore is amazed. His eyes bulge as he scratches his head in wonderment at how Parisians get free health care by loving French medical professionals. He’s simply thrilled at the revelation that the French government evidently provides workers to do the laundry for families with children. He’s so smitten with the concept of government-provided laundresses that he uses that as the big dramatic “punch line” of the movie, carrying his laundry over his shoulder and trekking up Capital Hill hoping to convince the U.S. government to do the same for him.

Hardy-har-har. Really riveting stuff, eh?

I’m now officially convinced that most American movie critics are the biggest bunch of spineless wonders in practically any occupation. I can picture them walking out of their screening rooms fully realizing what a stinker of a movie “Sicko” is, but terrified at being labeled un-hip or non-cool by not salivating over a Michael Moore debacle.

I’ve only scratched the surface of how truly rotten this movie is. I’ll spare you the agony of hearing how Moore fawns over Cuba and the heroic techniques Cuban doctors used to help the sick (exploited) 9/11 victims; I’ll resist describing in detail how Moore crams his massive frame into a tiny French car with a doctor who makes house calls; and I’ll avoid detailing all the America-hating, French/Cuba/England-loving tripe that Moore constantly spews in this movie that moves at a glacier’s pace.

If you’re considering shelling out any money to watch a movie this weekend, by all means, avoid “Sicko.” It doesn’t even manage to do what his other movies have done and leave you sick to your stomach.

Meanwhile, I’ve gotta try and figure out how to get those two hours of my life back that were utterly wasted this afternoon…