Heal is a film that attempts to give a spiritual answer towards a scientific question, however, fails to appeal to any mass demographic and is solely for the people who already believe/participate in the options that the film presents.
The film revolves around a young woman attempting to find alternative healing methods from a multitude of medical problems varying from the common cold to cancerous tumors. She seeks answers by talking to professional neurologists, healers, and medical practitioners.
The documentary holds a good amount of humor within it, having two points where the audience was howling. As well, it holds some very powerful moments where these alternative healing methods are being presented and the effect it has on the participants involved. However, as the film went on, one specific question kept presenting itself. What makes a documentary film a great film?
Heal makes its audience care about the material presented and should convince an average person to become an activist or supporter of the argument being presented in the film itself. Inequality For All gives the argument for capitalism and gives a solution of economic reform. Supersize Me gives the argument against continuous unhealthy eating and a solution with a different fashion of eating for better health. Both these documentaries both represented the arguments, yet respected the counterarguments that came with their opinion.
However, in Heal, it doesn’t present itself as an argument but a judgment on how people should live as a whole. It goes out of its way to provide scientific theories however, theories that are so broad that they don’t appear to be scientific or aid to the argument towards alternative healing. The film attempts to link them without any statistics but with one person accounts, which negates the tone that it is attempting to capture.
They also don’t present a history towards the practice of alternative healing, instead simply claiming that it was started by various philosophers.The difference in tone is so conflicting, it took me out of the movie as a person who had gone in with no bias towards either side of the argument that it was presenting.
The film itself is semi-well made with some technical issues that can be forgiven but should also be pointed out so don’t seem as sudden for someone who was interested in checking it out. The problem is I couldn’t recommend it to anyone I knew who didn’t have an opinion on the matter due to its continuous rejection of any counterargument. In addition to this, the editing was a bit choppy when it came to two of the personal stories. It felt a bit rushed in editing and likely didn’t fit well with the style the director might have been going for.