Depicting America's struggle with opioid addiction, mainly the drug OxyContin. Dopesick shows the effects this had on a variety of different lives with harrowing scenes and characters that could easily be anyone you know.
Written by Elliot Lines
Based on the nonfiction book Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy, the story that Dopesick conveys shows in full light the negligence and sheer greed of a company unwilling to take accountability for something they have caused. As stories go, this is a scary one, especially the way in which the program shows the effects on people's lives.
The show spans over a number of years, but jumps between them rather than running in a chronological order. It follows a variety of different characters including doctors, addicts, lawyers and company executives, and there are moments some of these stories overlap. This is an interesting way to tell this story as from the beginning you understand how much of a problem this crisis is, not only that but just the length of time it has gone on for.
Michael Keaton is the most well known star in the show, but there are plenty of great performances on show here including his. Peter Sarsgaard (Garden State) and John Hoogenakker (John Clancy's Jack Ryan) are a relentless pair of lawyers. Kaitlyn Dever (Booksmart) portrays a local girl that falls into the opioid addiction trap, perfectly showing the struggles to get out. Other notable performances are Will Poulter (We're the Millers) and Michael Stuhlbarg (Call Me By Your Name), who are on the total opposite side, behind the desk and the money coming in from this crisis.
Dopesick is a haunting yet mesmerising depiction of a very real problem. The way in which the stories are told over a number of years give us a deeper look into this opioid addiction crisis, jumping through the years from the rise of the problem, to the attempt to put a stop to it. One of the most clever and must watch mini-series' of last year.