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MPAA Rating: R-Rating (MPAA) for substance abuse, language and some sexual material
not reviewed
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
1 hr. 47 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
August 31, 2007 (limited)
DVD: April 20, 2010
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Featuring: Diane Venora, Monty Lapica, Michael Bowen, Greg Germann, Kristina Anapau, Matthew Carey, Shane Stuart, William Stanford Davis, Michael Mantell, Kelly Kruger, Karim Prince, Glenndon Chatman, Noah Segan, Marcus Toji, Richard Weisner
Director: Monty Lapica
Producer: Tommy Bell, Tommy Bell, Kevin Desouza, Michael Feifer, Monty Lapica, James Michael Marshall, Michael Silberman, Shane Stuart, Sean Wolfington
Distributor: ThinkFilm

Here’s what the distributor says about their film: “Based on true events. On the edges of Las Vegas, 17-year-old Andrew’s life is spiraling out of control. Unable to cope with the loss of his father, Andrew’s descent into drugs and violence is gaining momentum, and the once promising young man is now headed for self-destruction (in what Variety calls ‘an especially blistering performance by Monty Lapica’). Andrew’s mother (Golden Globe nominee Diane Venora), helpless to control her son and fighting an addiction of her own, refuses to watch idly as her only child destroys himself. As a last resort, she hires a private company to forcibly kidnap and confine him in a locked-down and corrupt psychiatric hospital. As Andrew is subjected to the secret physical and emotional abuses of the program something inside him is re-awakened. He must somehow get free to save what’s left of his life, but to do that, he knows he must first face his own demons head-on. ‘Self-Medicated’ is an extraordinary portrait of redemption and personal triumph over hardship that ‘packs a startling punch’ (Variety). ‘Raw, unmannered intensity… ‘Self-Medicated’ is just what the doctor ordered’ (The Hollywood Reporter). With 39 international film awards, ‘Self-Medicated’ is the most award-winning independent film of the year.”

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Comments below:
Positive—…This is one of those films that shakes what we call art and reality in films that have a Christian redemptive message. I am part of a small film project that crosses over into a street ministry. One evening we went to the only theatre that was showing this film in order to see iand use it to open a door to witness to people about Christ. We knew the film was about teenage drug use and were prepared to exit if necessary. Maybe that is not how you would do it but that is what we did.

We were completely blown away. The film is full of Christian subliminals and the end is clearly the story of redemption. I think that Mony Lapica may be a Christian but I really don’t know. What caused me personally to question the film was that it was littered with bad language. Although I find that offensive, I think the movie was being honest to a fault from a Christian point of view. I also understand Monty Lapica wanted to expose the horror he went through when he was committed to a certain medical facility. I may be wrong but I understand that that particular facility closed down a long time ago so Monty Lapica may be holding onto unforgiveness which if he is a Christian he may have communicated that offense is OK. I really don’t know all that he was intending but the message of redemption was really clear and those that would never darken the door of a church might find their heart unlocking when they see this film.

There is a lot of focus right now and controversy about the movie theatre being the new pulpit. If Monty Lapica wanted to do that he succeeded but many Christians would be offended. However, in truth, many of us see secular films littered with the same bad language and don’t consider it compromising. I don’t agree with that but, let’s be honest. There is nothing else I can recall that was objectionable about the film other than bad language and some sexual innuendos. This is not for children but to be honest, it could definitely be an ice breaker and could be used like we did, to open up a door to street witness in a theatre the true redemptive power of Christ.
My Ratings: Offensive / 4½
Cynthia Landry, age 50


Movie Critics
…On the basis of this film, Monty Lapica, at 24, has a career ahead of him as a director, an actor or both. …
Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
…‘Self Medicated’ is that rare treat: a really good movie and, one hopes for Lapica, the start of something even bigger. …
Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic
…The movie’s lack of nuance is balanced by its good intentions. …
Michael Ordoña, Los Angeles Times