Rated 4.0

With his trademark tone of perplexed bemusement, director Michael Moore sets out here to illustrate how much the health-care system, drug companies and health-insurance companies in America suck. Apparently they suck much, much more than most healthy folks would imagine. As Moore winds up for the pitch, Sicko isn’t about the 50 million Americans that move about their daily life without the dubious benefit of health insurance, it’s about the benighted folks who actually suffer under the shell game that poses as a health-care system under the snapping stars and stripes. In preparation for the documentary, Moore sent out invitations for personal horror stories, and received more than 25,000 responses. Some of those folks died during the course of filming, and others are vividly portrayed in their humiliating quest to try and squeeze out some recompense for what they’ve paid for. Also included is testimony from disillusioned workers in the trade, as well as illustrations of how our system compares to those of Canada, Great Britain, France and Cuba (a jaunt to the latter that eventually landed him in a boatload of trouble with the State Department), and truth be told, it’s not a pretty picture.