“Pain Hustlers,” a pharmaceutical drama film directed by David Yates, known for his work on the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts series, features a star-studded cast including Emily Blunt, Chris Evans, Andy Garcia, Catherine O’Hara, and Brian d’Arcy James. Despite the filmmaker’s reputation and the presence of big stars, does this Netflix film bring something distinctive to its pharmaceutical theme?

The film follows Liza Drake (Blunt), a young mother determined to do whatever it takes to support her daughter. Assisted by Pete (Evans), Liza seizes an opportunity to work for a pharmaceutical company on the brink of bankruptcy, manufacturing pain medication for cancer. Through persuasive tactics, they successfully sell the drug to an influential clinic, propelling the company to success but with illegal methods. As Liza’s career soars, the consequences of greed become inevitable.

While exploring the dark side of the pharmaceutical world, particularly the sales aspect, “Pain Hustlers” doesn’t delve into medical terminology and focuses more on the process, making it an intriguing watch. The narrative, centered around a successful career and the consequences of greed, may follow a familiar trajectory seen in other films like “I Care a Lot” and “Body Brokers.” The predictability of the greed factor makes the plot’s direction relatively foreseeable, and the film doesn’t offer a groundbreaking twist akin to “I Care a Lot.”

Despite not being the first or most outstanding film with a similar theme and message, the presence of notable stars elevates “Pain Hustlers.” The performances, while not necessarily Oscar-worthy, provide adequate support to the script. Yates showcases his editing skills through dynamic montage segments, adding a touch of flair to the film. However, it doesn’t go beyond that.

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While “Pain Hustlers” may shed light on the harsh realities of the pharmaceutical world, it doesn’t stand out as the best in its category. Other films like “I Care a Lot,” “Body Brokers,” or the documentary “Sicko” by Michael Moore may serve as better references for those interested in exploring this theme further.

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Artikel BerikutnyaQodrat Meriahkan Panggung Malam Puncak dengan Raih Piala Gunungan
His hobby has been watching films since childhood, and he studied film theory and history autodidactically after graduating from architectural studies. He started writing articles and reviewing films in 2006. Due to his experience, the author was drawn to become a teaching staff at the private Television and Film Academy in Yogyakarta, where he taught Film History, Introduction to Film Art, and Film Theory from 2003 to 2019. His debut film book, "Understanding Film," was published in 2008, which divides film art into narrative and cinematic elements. The second edition of the book, "Understanding Film," was published in 2018. This book has become a favorite reference for film and communication academics throughout Indonesia. He was also involved in writing the Montase Film Bulletin Compilation Book Vol. 1-3 and "30 Best Selling Indonesian Films 2012-2018." Additionally, he authored the "Horror Film Book: From Caligari to Hereditary" (2023) and "Indonesian Horror Film: Rising from the Grave" (2023). Until now, he continues to write reviews of the latest films at montasefilm.com and is actively involved in all film productions at the Montase Film Community. His short films have received high appreciation at many festivals, both local and international. Recently, his writing was included in the shortlist (top 15) of Best Film Criticism at the 2022 Indonesian Film Festival. From 2022 until now, he has also been a practitioner-lecturer for the Film Criticism and Film Theory courses at the Yogyakarta Indonesian Institute of the Arts in the Independent Practitioner Program.


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