Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 39
  2. Negative: 1 out of 39
  1. Sicko will scare people, and it probably should.
  2. 91
    Infuriating and funny, the film forges a disturbing diagram from the avarice and chaos of a slapdash, heartless system.
  3. Michael Moore intelligently, comically and incisively diagnoses and calls for the treatment of a sick U.S. health care system.
  4. Sicko is likely Moore's most important, most impressive, most provocative film, and it's different from his others in significant ways.
  5. Though we will differ on the methods of improving the American health care system, Sicko's enduring contribution is the undeniable evidence that the system is broken. If the film brings the debate out into the open of our movie lobbies and living rooms, it can’t be long before the conversation trickles into the corridors of Congress.
  6. 88
    In a summer of dumb, shameless drivel, Moore delivers a movie of robust mind and heart. You'll laugh till it hurts.
  7. 88
    I have only one complaint, and it is this: Every American should be as fortunate as I have been. As Moore makes clear in his film, some 50 million Americans have no insurance and no way to get it.
  8. Moore's most assured, least antagonistic and potentially most important film.
  9. It is not a polemic but a plea.
  10. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    88
    Highly entertaining and informative.
  11. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    88
    Sicko is Moore's best, most focused movie to date -- much more persuasive than the enraged and self-righteous "Fahrenheit 9/11."
  12. The Cuban escapade, designed to provoke, backfires when he loses focus by including Cuban firefighters in an homage to 9/11 first responders.
  13. With less lampooning and satirical asides, Sicko may be less "entertaining" than Moore's previous films, but it's also more affecting and effective.
  14. Barring a middle-class revolt, it's extremely unlikely that, whatever its virtues, universal healthcare could ever take hold in America. Still, I'm glad Moore made his film.
  15. Reviewed by: Simon Crook
    80
    Horrifying, heart-breaking, often hilarious - Moore’s latest shock doc is a potent polemic.
  16. Sicko is Moore’s best film: a documentary that mixes outrage, hope, and gonzo stunts in the right proportions; that poses profound questions about the connection between health care and work.
  17. 80
    The movie is a great piece of populist outrage and a dangerously good comedy about a looming American tragedy.
  18. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    80
    As both harangue and movie tragicomedy, Sicko is socko.
  19. Sicko doesn't formulate a way out of this heartless craps game we're playing. It is, however, a very entertaining position paper, and a reminder that we should do better by more of our citizenry.
  20. 75
    Sicko occasionally returns to Bush, but it doles out the smacks equally on both sides of the political spectrum (Sen. Hillary Clinton gets hers, too).
  21. 75
    This being a Michael Moore film, the filmmaker is as enraging as the subject: His belligerent court-jester shtick wears thin fast and undermines the segments on universal health-care systems in Canada, the U.K., France and Cuba.
  22. 75
    As a documentary, this movie has the same problems as all of those in Moore's oeuvre; as a polemic or a visual op-ed piece, it's an effective piece of filmmaking.
  23. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    75
    This is a movie, not a position paper, and Moore aims to entertain as he informs.
  24. The only country in the Western world without a universal system – is indeed Sicko. But if that social wound is gapingly obvious, so is this documentary.
  25. The film contains the usual Moore plusses and minuses, now familiar to anyone who's watched even one of his films.
  26. 75
    Moore's movies may not always be fully accurate in their details, but they almost always spur vital national conversation.
  27. 75
    The problem with Sicko--one endemic to Moore documentaries in general--is that it never confronts any challenges to its position, which can make it seem like the crudest sort of agitprop.
  28. 70
    Sicko Is flawed and occasionally stretches to make its point, but the movie's message speaks for itself.
  29. 70
    While Sicko is the most persuasive and least aggravating of all of Moore's movies, it still bears many of the frustrating Moore earmarks -- most notably, a deliberately simplistic desire to render everything in black-and-white terms, as if he didn't trust his audience enough to follow him into some of the far more complex gray areas.
  30. 70
    It’s as a rhetorician that Moore is most original and effectively demagogic.
  31. 70
    Sicko is the least controversial and most broadly appealing of Mr. Moore’s movies. (It is also, perhaps improbably, the funniest and the most tightly edited.) The argument it inspires will mainly be about the nature of the cure, and it is here that Mr. Moore’s contribution will be most provocative and also, therefore, most useful.
  32. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    70
    The simplicity of Sicko's argument is also its power.
  33. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    70
    Though it has its share of voice-over exposition and comic stock footage, the film's real purpose is to aggregate individual health-care horror stories into a portrait of the profit-driven and (literally) inhospitable place our country has become.
  34. Reviewed by: Alissa Simon
    70
    An affecting and entertaining dissection of the American health care industry, showing how it benefits the few at the expense of the many.
  35. Lots of Sicko stands as boffo political theater, but its major domo lost me by losing his sense of humor.
  36. There are fewer jokes this time around, and Moore makes a point of not even appearing on-screen for a good 40 minutes, putting more emphasis on his arguments and less on his comic persona.
  37. Ladies and gentlemen, I think we can agree on two things: The American health-care system is busted and Michael Moore is not the guy to fix it. His Sicko, an investigation and indictment of a system choking on paperwork, greed, bad policy and countervailing goals, turns out to be a fuzzy, toothless collection of anecdotes, a few stunts and a bromide-rich conclusion.
  38. 40
    Michael Moore has teased and bullied his way to some brilliant highs in his career as a political entertainer, but he scrapes bottom in his new documentary, Sicko.
  39. 25
    The silliness of Moore's oeuvre is so self-evident that being able to spot it is not liberal or conservative, either; it's a basic intelligence test, like the ability to match square peg with square hole. His documentaries are political slapstick that could have been made by a third Farrelly brother or a fourth Stooge.
User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 230 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 16 out of 129
  1. ChrisD.
    Apr 9, 2008
    10
    I was very surprised at this movie, it is a very effective documentary of the various health care systems of the world. Many will say that Moore is at it again, but I think he has shown (again) what a remarkable filmmaker he really is. I wept during one scene, and I never weep (maybe get teary every once in a awhile...), it was devastating to see and hear these horrible incidences happening to regular, hardworking people. You can say what you will about Michael Moore (I don't agree with some of his positions personally), but his movie has done an excellent job of exposing our country's completely broken and corrupt system of health care, and hopefully the dialog surrounding this movie will move politicians to rethink their position on universal health care. Full Review »
  2. May 28, 2011
    8
    Sicko is a rather difficult film to critically analyse and rate. On the one hand it is simply amazing and utterly necessary for American (and world) society. Moore beautifully portrays the problems and issues behind the situation in the U.S. health care system. The U.S. is fundamentally inhumane when it comes to health care, and whether most Americans are willing to admit that, Moore plows that point across with fierce dedication.
    On the other hand, to prove his point, he glosses over the problems that people in his case study countries - Cuba, Canada, UK, France - actually experience. With an obvious bias, Moore does not even try to show us the negative sides of the health care in the other countries. His "typical middle class French family" is not quite as typical as he might want us to believe. Or that British doctor is not necessarily a 100% representative of all British or European doctors, who most certainly do not live in $1 million houses & apartments. However, Moore does manage to bring a human aspect to the film, and give it a soul that many documentaries fail at. For that reason, and for the fact that he is addressing an issue that is in urgent need of addressing, this film does deserve quite a high rating. And, when it comes to his bias - well, documentaries are always biased. They never claim to represent the "truth" for they are always made with an intent, that cannot be fully objective. And Moore quite certainly recognises that, and just as he did with "Bowling for Columbine" and "Fahrenheit 9/11," he unrelentingly pursues his point across. Excellent documentary!
    Full Review »
  3. ChrisG.
    Nov 30, 2007
    9
    Moore's style may infuriate critics, but if you ignore that for a moment and concentrate on the subject matter & content, it's hard not to be moved to tears at the plight of average Americans. I'm from Canada, and although we have some problems with our system, they pale in comparison to the US model. How long will people tolerate corporations and their tactics for making money? Some day America is going to crumble under the weight of all the social injustice like this. At least Moore wants to do something about it, and I commend him for that. Full Review »