I have wanted to watch this movie since I saw the trailer around Christmas time. As someone who worked in a profession where I dealt with addicts on a daily basis, and have dealt with addiction with someone really close to me, this movie hit home.
The truth is, an addict doesn't want to be an addict. The character who portrayed Ben, really showed the self-debilitating, and self-loathing battle an addict faces with temptation, the guilt, the remorse, especially when an addict is attempting to get clean. It also did a phenomenal job showing the families, what they go through, the struggle within to help or detach from the addict, and all around how addiction destroys not only the lives of the addict, but the lives of those who love them.
For me, there were two profound moments in the film. The moment Ben's mom went to the pharmacy, in an attempt to pick up "NARCAN" but yet, they don't carry it. But when Ben went to the same pharmacy for a needle, he was able to purchase one without issue. In my opinion, it highlighted the HUGE problem we have in this country, with not only confronting drug addiction, but the pharmaceutical companies profiting billions of dollars off of addiction. It is a huge problem and one that promotes addiction for profit. Addiction is a huge money maker and this is why there are so many addicts and so many overdoses. Suboxone, Methadone, etc. They are profiting billions keeping addicts high, only with a "legal form" of high, that is so often misused and abused. The second moment was when Ben's mom went to her friends house for help when Ben ran away. Her friend said something very profound, ""We can't save them, but you will hate yourself if you don't try." This is a constant battle for those who love addicts. We just can't give up on them, even though their addiction destroys us as well too, physically and emotionally, because we know the person before addiction. The addict is addicted to drugs, and we become addicted to "fix it".
For those who say this story is not realistic, I believe you have never dealt with addiction on a personal level. Holly, Ben's mom, gave an incredible performance, portraying a very realistic mom who loves her drug addict son. Her love is unconditional, and her faith is profound.
Why this movie wasn't in theaters everywhere is beyond me. I think it is a must watch for all pre-teens/teens and families who have battled with addiction. The truth is, no one "wants" to be an addict. I used to tell my clients parents all the time, "your son didn't steal from you, your son on dope did".
The ending left a lot of unanswered questions, but I can only guess the writers did this because every addicts story is different and everyone's addiction has a different ending.
I truly hope this does well on video, and I believe this should be shown in High-Schools across the country. Addiction is a very "real" problem, one people shy away from speaking about. I believe every parent should watch this with their pre-teens, and discuss the devastating effects of addiction.