“Addiction” An HBO Premium Documentary

Table of Content


            Perceived to be one of the most devastating catastrophic societal problem faced by the contemporary society of today is the doom of addiction, which had been noted by researchers as the poison of the youth’s future.  According to various critics who made a crucial analysis on reasons why individuals engage in such form, they have noted that people venturing on such darkness are those by which are considered to have had left the world of normality (Cheever & Nevins, 2007).

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 However, the verge on such quest on to defining the precise reasons of the event is still laid on the table of further discussion in order to raise the cure to the sickness of addiction whether it is an implication of intentional or unintentional perspective.  In the light of gaining answers to the long argument, deliberative researches and other forms of conceptual analysis on how to obtain the solution to the sociological, physical and psychological insinuations of such, various groups crafted possible media means to reach the society and save the ‘addicted individuals’.

One of the top rating channels on Television, HBO with the partnership of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, armed with the focusing on programs and other outreach activities with regards to health and health care issues ventured on a joint project for a global benefit in the arena of preserving humankind’s holistic package in a documentary project aired on international media, establishing the darkness and the doomful summations of Addiction. Along with the benevolence of the aforementioned institutions, the National Institute on Drug Abuse as well as the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism also divulged their efforts for the strengthening of the production of the documentary (“Addiction,” 2007).

Thesis Statement

The obscurity of addiction is characterized as a relapsing brain disease creating a dim dimension of an individual’s mental state.  Perceivably, due to the rampant cases which had been reported and noted with the Justice Department undeniably raises the point of the purpose of the creation of the documentary segment.  Considerably one of the pious reasons, is to reach the masses level of rationality in realizing the need for drug and alcohol addiction to be fully eradicated in the larger perspective of living not only for the benefit of those who will be saved, but for the prevention of the occurrence of instances or cases of the like.  Moreover, Addiction, which presents stories of those who have had suffered the withdrawal and immediate implications of being attached to such,  if sought by those who are at present swimming in the valley of such, will eventually change their approach and will most likely grip away from the crap.

Summary of the Film

            Given the fact that the film presents stories of individuals who have been saved from the fires of addiction is being aired on one of the most dominating and popular channels on media broadcasting, its ability to reach viewers is considered as a great factor towards the goal of reaching the contemporary subjects, specifically the underground ‘addicts’.  In the light of associating the hypothesis in the psychological scheme, and the convergence of media impact on the society, if the viewers shall be able to realize the trouble of engaging in such level of addictions, positive transformation is most likely to float up in the strings of the community.  Furthermore, HBO as well as its alliances on drug obliteration, being armed with the quest they offer segments which fall on the line of benefit for the viewers such as addiction facts (which are scientifically researched and contributed by doctors and other individuals specializing on such field and even on adolescent addiction (which caters a series of real-life stories of teens from different countries to cite the consideration of racial and cultural differences which also serves as realization-instruments for the masses).  Aside from the introduction of facts about addiction, the film also caters treatment (which demonstrates the right mix of therapies in relation with drug withdrawal symptoms and all the other appropriate help needed by the like), aftercare (denotes the recovery practices for the preservation and reconstruction of the destructed relapses) and stigma & discrimination (which opens the advocacy of changes and the rights of the ‘addicted’ individuals for the goal of helping them recover from the downfall caused by addiction).  All of such segments brought about by the documentary are but considered as a vanguard for total transformation and salvation of humanity (“Addiction,” 2007).

Analysis / Critique of the Film

            The misuse of the considered to devious items for socialization and self-satisfaction namely alcohol and other drugs had been distinguished as taking away an approximate number of 120,000 lives in the United States of America per year (“Addiction,” 2007).  Along with it, a hysterical number of crimes had been institutes to have had been the manifestation of those who were influenced or high with drugs or alcohol.  Such violent cases were evidently proven that such individuals who committed crimes were influenced by either the liquid or substantiated components of the suspected entities (Cheever & Nevins, 2007).    Obviously, the documentary’s initial aim is to inform the masses of how doomful addiction may actually cause a prey.  By having individuals share their stories and emotions with regards to their addiction, which on the most concrete sense take place on one common room – addiction had never been good and had never helped anybody in any form.  Oftentimes, the show features people, who are successful in the world of business and economy, which in some state forms a perception that “change” is not too late and that change is possible.  Although for some instances, that certain change may not be as smooth sailing as to how the ‘addicted one’ may thoroughly expect it to be.

Overall, the main purpose is to inform, transform and save the ‘lost souls’.  As a matter of fact, the society ‘leech’ or drug abuse is one of the most common criminal cases in the society today. It is a form of substance abuse, just like alcoholism, since these illicit drugs are actually addictive in nature. Because of this, many people who are hooked on drugs cannot easily let go of the addiction, and would often lead to drug-related crimes like robbery, physical assault, or even murder. Not only does these drugs dangerous to others, but it is also harmful in the drug users’ body, causing the body to take into negative turns, like deterioration and organ failures (Cheever & Nevins, 2007).

In further illustration of the advantage of the film, one of its most apparent strength is its ability and capability to reach not only the residents of the USA, where the network is actually based, but its aptitude of being heard and regarded by other countries as well.  Perhaps it is one of the major factors which gives and advantage and credit to HBO since that not all channels are available in other countries and thus such programs and shows will not be able to be viewed by other races.  Consequently, if the thought shall be taken in a rather broader perspective, the latter is taking much responsibility in the field of media broadcasting taken for the fact that they could anticipate that every program they shall air on television are watched and sought after by a larger scale of audience.  However, its advantage on being ‘famous’ in media telecast also denote the need for HBO to be crucial, careful and justifiable in anything that sprouts their concern, like how the famous line uttered by Spiderman flows, “great power comes great responsibility”,  a statement of the crucially dwelled line in international service.

            Moreover, the cognitive response of the audience must also be taken into consideration by the network.  Such scenes and documentations on the television may be a huge form of influence to the young minds. The sagacity of ‘mimicking’ which is further established in the field of psychoanalytic research has been found to be evident in various cases concerning children (Macionis, 2005).   In a study conducted with regard to the impact of media on society’s perception, it had been blatant that children who are often exposed to television are prone to impersonating the icons and the people which they happen to see and television (Pearson, 2006).

The sad part of the fact is, some scenes which convey explicit messages and other forms of the like that show images or scenes on violence and crime are sometimes mimicked which then becomes the issue on the film’s morality rate.  It may not seem to be the objective of the show, but considering the innocence and the inevitable state of psychological affluences, such mentioned scheme eats up the apple of reality.  Sociologically speaking, addiction had long been bugging the government’s desk and the country’s rampant problems on violence.  One who is found to be influenced or is swallowed with addiction are considered a culprit of the state’s serenity or a bad influence to the young generation.  No wonder why the noted targets of the catastrophic habit of addiction are the young minds.  In a survey, adolescents’ heightened intensity over sensitivity is the major reason why they are consciously or subconsciously influenced in using the ‘illegal’ drugs.

They are either peaked in peer pressure (group of friends involved in addiction) or the uncontrollable impulse of critical judgment areas of the brain leading them to the valley of ‘taking new things’ or the so-called ‘exploring the trend’.   By which beyond their knowledge would not only cost them their health, but their reputation as well.  In point of fact, the film will not only benefit viewers with the delight in watching films catering a bunch of drama, suspense, and real-life story interpretations but factual ideas with regards to Addiction and sociological problems which seem to give advantage to the holistic package of one’s personality .

Hence, the most probable group which will consider Addiction as a guiding light to their persona would be the adolescents (Cheever & Nevins, 2007).  In the most essential assumption of the issue, today’s contemporary youth are lucky enough for having been given the extra glitch of knowing the effects of drugs and thus still have the time to change for the betterment of their selves (Pearson, 2006).


            Films which render a divulging sense of aid to issues which involve health and sociological problems are stressed to be that which gives a cliché’ in captivating viewer’s attention.  If only films would be as educational as that of Addiction, the acuity of media mishap would not be a mark in the society’s echelon of understanding.  But just like any other films, the crucial tendency of airing what is not to be aired must also is taken contemplation coherent with media regulation and discretionary measures for mutual gain from both the network and humanity.


Addiction (Publication (2007). Retrieved July 17, 2007, from Home Box Office Inc.: http://www.hbo.com/addiction/?ntrack_para1=leftnav_category6_show4

Cheever, S., & Nevins, S. (2007). Addiction: Why Can’t They Just Stop? (1 ed.). New York: Rodale Books.

Macionis, J. J. (2005). Sociology (Eleventh ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Pearson. (2006). Supplement: Study Guide – Sociology: International (Student 11Rev Ed ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Sampaio, R. (2006). The Hermeneutic Conception of Culture. The Culture of Philosophy   Retrieved April 11, 2007, from http://www.bu.edu/wcp/Papers/Cult/CultSamp.htm

“Your Turn” Question

Why Study Social Interactions?


Multicultural Philosophy became a basis of understanding for these scientists, since it is a broad topic of concern, encompassing other issues like religion, politics, human rights and many more (Sampaio, 2006). Social scientists are able to understand these things further, basing their inferences on multicultural philosophy; they are able to explain concepts that pose great irregularities. Because of these, they are able to channel these facts to the people better, thus making the people aware of certain things, like how could the cultural differences be detrimental to national peace, etc. They are able to know what they should do regarding these concerns. Information is a great tool on order to solve problems and differences, thus leading a more peaceful society.

With regards to the assimilation of the various cultural groups, multicultural philosophy requires these groups to fall out or separate from the homogeneous norm (their individual beliefs, culture, etc.) and assimilate or embrace the dominant culture paradigm. This should be done without changing or adjusting the content of the dominant group. They should be the ones to adopt the ways of the dominant culture group and should follow the norms of the society they are in. With this, they are able to blend and adapt to the environment they are in. This is applied with the various cultures of the immigrant groups coming and settling in a country (Pearson, 2006).

In conclusion, the differences of individuals which is considerably the primary reason why the advent of sociological studies has risen in the scene of human populace creates a whole new dimension of being able to accept the differences of individuals and being able to cope up with the realization that ‘no man is an island’ and thus, every human being is entitled to take heed in accepting such challenge of involvement for the development of one’s personality as well as with one’s ability for societal changes.


Pearson. (2006). Supplement: Study Guide – Sociology: International (Student 11Rev Ed ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Sampaio, R. (2006). The Hermeneutic Conception of Culture. The Culture of Philosophy   Retrieved April 11, 2007, from http://www.bu.edu/wcp/Papers/Cult/CultSamp.htm

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“Addiction” An HBO Premium Documentary. (2016, Jun 10). Retrieved from


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