They Call Me Dr. Miami, directed by Jean-Simon Chartier, is about plastic surgeon Michael Salzhauer, who is better known on social media and pop culture, as Dr. Miami. In fact, if one were to see only brief clips of the bootylicious women looking like they are lining up to be extras in a Miami set Bad Boys, one might assume that Dr. Miami is another alias for Mister Worldwide! But, he is indeed a real doctor, probably the most famous surgeon in the world and the world wide web where his videos collect millions of views and followers.
He owes his fame to the rise of prominent influencers known for representing the idea of ideal beauty. These women have specific “assets” contributing to their myths. The infamous Brazilian Butt Lift is so popular that its demand increased exponentially in the last few years, creating a long line of gals of all backgrounds waiting to get one at Dr. Miami’s practice. The surgeon understands what the people want: one might not have the wealth or access to the “yacht lifestyle” but can save to pay for the body that could eventually help get closer to this #instalife.
“…plastic surgeon Michael Salzhauer, who is better known on social media and pop culture, as Dr. Miami.”
So Dr. Miami does what any savvy marketer would do, by embracing this culture and is game for anything. He live-streams graphic surgeries, mingles with the stars, and appears in rap videos glorifying his work and the cult of the body. Of course, this creates controversies, and his peers criticize and shame him, worried about how such publicity will make their profession look.
Salzhauer is more than advertising, having done alterations on himself as he suffered, like many of his clients, from insecurities due to certain parts of his face not looking “right.” He’s an advocate for people who believe fixing their bodies will help fix themselves. He adds that if getting under the knife ends up doing nothing more than making one look more to their liking on the outside, then maybe they’ll learn that their problems were not their body. Although viewers don’t get to see more of this facet as the documentary moves pretty fast from one thing to another without judgment, there is no arguing that Dr. Miami offers a few valid points.
However, not only is Salzhauer upsetting his colleagues but his family as well. At home, the doctor is a million miles away from his flashy office persona. He is your typical suburban dad doctor, married to the love of his life, and father of five children. But more surprisingly, they are a devoted orthodox Jew family. He’s often at the synagogue, practices his religion with his family, and observes the sabbath. This contrasts with his other world, particularly as we’re introduced to his no-nonsense yet supportive wife and teenage daughter disapproving of his choices. Like many, they do not understand his need to show-off and his lack of self-esteem. But more importantly, they do not approve of him “denigrating himself” in silly videos or, worse, “trashy” obscene ones contradicting their religious values.