Clean and Sober

 
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Customer Reviews:

  • perfection
    Michael Keaton performs his role as an addict to perfection. This movie is both inspirational and hysterically funny. It is of interest to all, those with or without drug or alcohol abuse concerns in their family, or NOT!...more info
  • Very good.
    This is a true to life movie that shows denial as well as the way everyone can fall back....more info
  • The Best
    This movie is on my top 5 all time Greatest! Absolutely Michael Keaton's Finest performance! Gripping, Sobering, Stunning! Morgan Freeman is Spectacular! A MUST SEE!...more info
  • As real as it gets in recovery from drug / alcohol addiction
    Has to be the best so far, realistic portrayal of a person suffering from polyaddiction - from deceit (lies with addiction), pain (suffering of withdrawal), belief (believing in oneself, to live with the days ahead in a clean and sober lifestyle). Beyond a doubt, this is very best yet....more info
  • A decent movie with some weaknesses
    This was an entertaining movie with some strong performances. However, something about it is lacking an air of realism. I've attended many AA and NA meetings myself, and the portrayal here is somewhat cliched and not completely accurate. I've also been through several treatments, and the portrayal here is also "off" somehow. Modern treatment centers don't really operate in the way things are portrayed here. If you want to know what most AA meetings are really like, find an "open" meeting in your area and attend it. However, this movie was entertaining and the performances are good. It was a bit over-long, and there was too much focus on the romance between Keaton and Baker. More realism, less sentimentality and a little more cutting-room time, and this movie could have been better. But I enjoyed it.

    Note - The DVD version is offered only in pan-and-scan, and there are literally no features on the disc....more info

  • Serious topic affecting 70 million Americans
    CLEAN AND SOBER, starring MICHAEL KEATON (MK), MORGAN FREEMAN, KATHY BAKER, is a movie that will potentially raise as many questions as the answers that is gives out, considering that it touches upon the subjects of narcotics addiction, alcoholism, and the disorder and chaos that is felt in many people's personal lives.

    Not knowing MK personally, the work suggests an almost invisible line between the character that is played by MK in the film, and MK himself, as an actor, such is the realistic feel of the flow of events.

    The story starts out with MK snorting cocaine with the daughter of a client, from whom he
    embezzles $92,000 to speculate on the stock market with high risk derivatives and options, albeit only being a realtor or real estate agent. This puts his job in jeopardy at his employer, obviously, and the substance abuse is coupled with alcoholism, temper tantrums,
    deafness in aspects of social skills with those surrounding him, the loss of control over
    his over destiny and the annhiliation of his own reputation, that is actually crucial
    for any salesperson to survive in a highly competitive field, where trust is paramount
    with the clients, before any deal can close successfully.

    The value of this work, is not the cinematography (merely TV box-sized release), as the colors seem to lack luster, or the bland and unimaginative music. Rather, the uniqueness of the film, is the attempt to educate the viewer in how a de-tox program unfolds.

    The program begins with a 48 hour cold turkey cessation of substances, often in bed. The withdrawal symptoms (vomiting, cold sweats) disappear between 2 to 5 days later, at which point the coordinator (played by Morgan Freeman) urges participants to exert an intense athletics and exercise program (pushups, etc) so as to help the mind focus on the desired end and tasks at hand.

    The next phase, is a sequence of town hall meetings, to naturally satisfy the natural impulse of participants to discuss their lives, what led up to their addiction in drugs and alcohol,
    and to hear others do the same, taking and learning while they go along.

    Next, a so-called "Family Room" is occupied, apparently signaling that a psychological
    intimacy has been achieved, and a total honesty among all heretofore, with a continuation of physical activity, exercise which turns into "probations" under which, the individuals
    are allowed to communicate with the outside world for the first time since they started (the phone, and travel from the detox center being isolated since day 1.)

    Morgan's character is well trained in reading people's faces in terms of whether they are being totally honest and upfront about how clean they are and to what degree they've adhered to the program thus far, and actually kicks out several people for not sticking with it,
    or lying about deviation from the process. Eventually, a graduation is held, that is appropriately celebrated with music and dance.

    The film shows that the completion of the detox, is not a destination, or an end in itself, but a fresh starting point, or motivator to being sorting out the anarchy, or disorder that is present in each of the participant's personal and professional lives. For some, as with MK's character, this is easier said than done, as was the case with cleaning his own addiction, as he's admittedly become dependent on a married woman for his own romantic
    impulses, herself struggling with a husband with a substance problem and a shaky marriage.

    The lesson to be drawn is difficult to discern. Are financially troubled people, with bruised ego's and low self-esteem from professional and / or personal success more susceptible and prone to substance abuse and alcoholism? Or does addiction occur more frequently among those suffering from OCS (obsessive compulsive disorder) for example, as MK's character seems to show ? Do the problems relate to a biological inability to happily grow older as the years pass? Kathy Baker's and MK seem to revert to a teenage romance with its corresponding joy despite their actual ages, with a nostalgic trip in time to the JFK years of 1962 hit songs.

    At the end of the day, there is only so much that any given individual can expect, whether before or after the detox program, from friends, family, employer, which is that nobody wants to pull the weight of another person who refuses to do so. Life isn't perfect, but one cannot give up on life under the excuse of those imperfections ( not being well connected, others are allowed to get away with financial schemes, etc.)

    A questionable decision, in the editing room, was exposing several times the behinds of several actors, messy arm pits, and long dialogs in the urinal while taking samples.

    The most remarkable is the finding of a sponsor, during the detox program, who is the addict's personal life-line to curing their problem, and clearing the way to a more probable successful outcome, by carrying out emotional discussions, flushing pills, hard liquor and substances down the toilet, etc.

    Be advised that a healthy liver weighs only 3.5 lbs, and can grow to weigh 4 times heavier when abused....more info
  • The truth about how far drug addicts will go.
    I have seen this video twice and now I am going to buy it. It shows just how far a person will go to satisfy their drug habit. Also shows far far they will go to keep from getting caught. Some addicts don't believe they have a drug problem, but they can see others problems. Detox is no picnic, losing a friend isn't either, but admitting that your are an addict takes even more courage. I recommend this movie to anybody that has a friend or family member who is an addict to drugs or alcohol....more info
  • Reality as it best
    Micheal Keaton character in this film shows the truth when someone is in denial of their problems and are afraid to face the truth. The film does show how this country has to realize that our country has a serious problem with drugs and alcohol and we need more rehab places....more info
  • Michael Keaton in rare dramatic role!!! Such a great film and a very underated actor!
    This film is a keeper,the underated and always wonderful Michael Keaton(a very underated actor that we don't see enough of anymore) in rare dramatic film about the effects of cocaine abuse,and trying to kick the habit. Great supporting cast that includes Morgan Freeman,M.Emmmet Walsh,and Kathy Baker. I guess the only quibble I have with the DVD is that it's Standard Full Frame and NOT anamorpic widesceeen,but it's still a nice transfer overall. It's the performances that matter with this one!!! Recommended!!! Two thumbs up! A+...more info
  • Keaton has never supassed this movie, yet
    This still is Micheal Keaton's best film. Oddly, it was his first dramatic film. Most people today know Keaton as someone who does dramatic films, not remembering he always did comedies and standup. He did Mr. Mom, Beetlejuice, the Dream Team, Night Shift, etc. Taken in light of this, Clean and Sober is a very depressing film, and one of the better films to handle the often overly-used storyline on drug addiction. I was stunned at Keaton's acting ability in this film. You genuinely hated him, but throughout the film, you learn to accept him and give him the thumbs up as he tries to build his life back together. Not a family flick, nor a rousing "I'm glad I'm alive" film. It's a dark and realistic film. And, hey, it's got Morgan Freeman in a stellar supporting role, too. Keaton's best film to date.

    The DVD doesn't have anything else on it, but frankly, here's one instance where I just wouldn't want anything extra. It would have been nice to have Dolby Digital 5.1 sound, but I can live with it. It's not an action film, after all....more info

  • OK
    I picked this film up for it's 80's nostalgia. It depicts the AA/NA meetings/groups and sponsors well. it's still hollywood, but is pretty true to form. Great performance by Morgan Freeman and Michael Keaton....more info

 

 
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