Sunday, September 9, 2018

DVD/VODebut for Anne Georget's smart muck-raking doc, CHOLESTEROL: THE GREAT BLUFF

If you're anything like TrustMovies in terms of your approach to health, medical science and prescription drugs, you'll have opted out of the whole cholesterol fiasco some years, if not decades, ago. If not (or even if so), you may want to watch the 2016 documentary by Anne Georget entitled CHOLESTEROL: THE GREAT BLUFF. This intelligent, precise and often quite amusing movie offers up medical and nutrition professionals who do not believe in all the lower-your-cholesterol! hype that has been dished out to Americans and much of the western world over the past half century, ever since a would-be scientist named Ancel Keyes began a series of "studies" that claimed to show how important was diet and lowering cholesterol to better health and a lower rate of heart attacks.

Ms Georget, shown at left, has put together an interesting group of experts and woven their comments into a documentary that includes history (dating back to the 1950s), pro-cholesterol TV commercials (as below, some of these wildly, hilariously over-the-top), and smart scientific explanations of what cholesterol is, how it works and why so much of the ersatz "studies" and "science" we've been so far fed are so rife with bullshit.

Beginning with our own President Eisenhower, who suffered a heart attack (which Ancel Keyes and his group attributed to Ike's high-fat diet, rather than to anything else (such as his constant smoking!), we

move to a Framingham, Massachusetts, study (that thoroughly contradicted the results of Keyes) and then to quite an array of, well, not quite the usual suspects, but important groups -- the NIH, WHO and even the folk who hand out those Nobel Prizes -- all too willing, nay eager, to jump on the cholesterol bandwagon.

By the time we get to the arrival of statin medication, along with its unwanted side effects, and how the pharmaceutical industry contrives to market its product, if you are not ready to rethink your acceptance of the usual cholesterol theories, I shall be greatly surprised.

Consistently interesting and full of enough information to make you ever angrier, Cholesterol: The Great Bluff should prove eye-opening and maybe even mind-changing for some viewers.

From Icarus Films Home Video, in French and English, with English subtitles as needed, the documentary runs 82 minutes and becomes available on DVD and VOD this Tuesday, September 11 -- for purchase and/or rental.  In addition to its main feature, the disc offers a second documentary entitled BRANDING ILLNESS, also by Ms Georget, that is very nearly as good as to the cholesterol doc.

While including some of the same speakers and a modicum of repetition, this 52-minute doc shows us the manner in which the major pharmaceutical companies have actually created diseases -- like PMDD, the "cure" for which, as one doctor explains, is simply Prozac in a different color! -- and then supplied medication that supposedly helps the sufferer.

From teenagers being told that they maybe need to take Viagra to a Japan in which the "disease" of depression suddenly arrived to a faux anti-flatulence campaign, the documentary proves a goldmine of anti-Big Pharma ammunition. Don't miss this still-timely and thoroughly muckraking pair of very pointed assaults on an industry that both needs and deserves them.

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