Side Effects

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -3

Rooney Mara, Channing Tatum, Jude Law, Catherine Zeta-Jones. Crime drama. Written by Scott Z. Burns. Directed by Steven Soderberg.

FILM SYNOPSIS: A successful New York couple’s world unravels when a new drug prescribed by Emily's psychiatrist - intended to treat anxiety - has unexpected side effects. But all is not what it seems.

PREVIEW REVIEW: What starts out as an indictment of the medical community turns into a predictable triple-cross thriller about murder, lust and extortion. The first act has a woman so foggy in the head due to the experimental prescriptions her analyst is prescribing that one day she kills someone, supposedly completely unaware of her crime. Although Americans are about 5% of the Earth’s population, we consume over 50% of prescriptions written worldwide. And many of these drugs are making us sicker than ever, or at least dependent upon them. And sadly, there are many in the medical community who are indifferent to the problem. There’s big money in pharmaceuticals. And where there is big money, there is often corruption, deception and evil. There’s your story – one seldom addressed. Alas, here it just becomes a cheap backdrop to a rather silly suspense actioneer. What’s more, by film’s end the medical community is left off the hook. I felt cheated, as if it weren’t really a perceptive drama, just a placebo.

Rated R for the usual offenses and lack of creativity – language – sexual situations – and graphic violence.

DVD Alternative: Doctored is a documentary from Jeff Hays Films and Working Pictures about the manipulation of the American Medical Association to discredit chiropractic treatment. But it’s about much more. It reveals a disturbing account of how the medical field is used to enslave people to drugs and unnecessary medical procedures.

I knew something wasn’t right when I’d watch commercials where the side effects outweighed the benefits of drugs being promoted. Doctored is an indictment of the medical system and should be seen. For more info on where to get a copy of the DVD, click .

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Open Road Films

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: Twenty-two obscenities, mostly the f-word.

Profanity: I caught one profanity.

Violence: A couple of violent and jolting deeds, including a woman attempting suicide by driving a car into a wall and a woman suddenly stabbing a person to death. Some blood found by the dead body.

Sex: Three sexual situations, the last one becoming somewhat graphic; lesbianism suggested, including two women kissing and fondling.

Nudity: A nude woman is seen in bed.

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: Most everyone in the film takes prescription drugs, but this should make a negative statement.

Other: None

Running Time: 106 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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