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By Mark Bell | September 8, 2012

It’s Nurse Tyler’s (Sarah Glendening) first day of work with Dr. Cash (Eric Roberts), and she’s about to get a crash course on what it means to work with the smooth-talking doctor. If you’ve got insurance, Dr. Cash is more than happy to treat you, probably in excess of what you’ll actually need. For example, one patient comes in to have stitches removed from his hand, leaves with an appointment for a colonoscopy. Is there any situation Dr. Cash can’t exploit for more money? By the end of this short film, you’ll have your answer.

Heal Thyself is ultimately a fun eight minutes, but it doesn’t necessarily do much beyond presenting a one note satire of professional medical practice as being just another corrupt, money-hungry business. It does have a punchline that goes against expectations (or doesn’t, depending on your own cynicism levels), but it doesn’t do much beyond making its one point and sticking with it. It doesn’t make it bad or anything, it just makes it… competent without being outstanding.

Heal Thyself gets everything right that it should get right, no one puts in a bad performance. You can’t go wrong with putting Edie McClurg on camera with a phone in her hand, having her wittily respond to unheard conversations. And Eric Roberts is at his charming-yet-slimey best as Dr. Cash while Sarah Glendening plays the naive nurse to perfection.

In the end, Heal Thyself is like a hit song that is pleasant enough that you don’t change the station, but at the same time you’re not rushing home to download the album (I almost typed “rushing to the store to buy the album,” but I don’t think that happens much anymore). It’s not a bad time, better than most, just not great.

This film was submitted for review through our Submission for Review system. If you have a film you’d like us to see, and we aren’t already looking into it on our own, you too can utilize this service.

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