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...First Do No Harm (1997)

TV Movie  -   -  Drama  -  16 February 1997 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,045 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 3 critic

The true story of one woman's struggle against a narrow-minded medical establishment.

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Title: ...First Do No Harm (TV Movie 1997)

...First Do No Harm (TV Movie 1997) on IMDb 6.9/10

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
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Dave Reimuller
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Robbie Reimuller
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Dr. Melanie Abbasac
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Marjean
Oni Faida Lampley ...
Marsha Williams
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Bob Purdue
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Dr. Jim Peterson
Mairon Bennett ...
Lynne Reimuller
Michael Yarmush ...
Mark Reimuller
Millicent Kelly ...
Herself
Diana Belshaw ...
Business Rep.
Lorraine Brockway ...
Lili's Grandmother
Dick Callahan ...
Gene Falconetti
Hugo Dann ...
Priest
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Storyline

When Lori Reimuller learns that her young son Robbie has epilepsy, she first trusts the judgment of the hospital staff in how best to bring it under control. As Robbie's health slides radically downhill, however, she becomes frustrated and desperate, and so does her own research into the existing literature on treatments. When she decides to try an alternative treatment called the Ketogenic Diet, devised long ago by a doctor from Johns Hopkins, she is met with narrow-minded resistance from Robbie's doctor, who is prepared to take legal action to prevent Lori from removing him from the hospital. This movie is an indictment of those in the medical profession who discuss only the treatment options they favor. Several of the minor characters are portrayed by people who have been not just helped, but cured by the Ketogenic diet. Written by Debra K. Day <dday@uic.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for intense emotional and physical depiction of a child's illness | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

16 February 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

...First Do No Harm  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jim Abrahams helped set up the Charlie Foundation in Santa Monica, California, an institution dedicated to spreading the word about the ketogenic diet to major paediatric neurological centres. It was through this network that he first came into contact with the Reimullers, the family depicted in the film. See more »

Connections

References The Wizard of Oz (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Over the Rainbow
Music by Harold Arlen
Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg
Performed by Aretha Franklin
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User Reviews

 
excellent realistic, heart wrenching story
27 February 2005 | by (California) – See all my reviews

Meryl Streep took a break from feature films for a rare TV movie role, while Jim (Airplane!) Abrahams took a break from wacky comedies, to tell this extraordinary story of a family that must take its health care into its own hands when the medical complex is failing them - after losing almost everything. Their son seems to have a variety of epilepsy that's tragically difficult to diagnose and treat.

Many have lost family members because they didn't have the strength and courage to challenge their doctors' biases before it was too late. So this true story is an important vaccine for people who need to take back responsibility for their families' health. It's a stark contrast and partial antidote to thousands of made-up movie and TV medical stories.

Streep, Fred Ward and the rest of the cast are superb. Allison Janney is perfectly cast as the doctor, because in real life the 'bad guys' are often smart, attractive, and certain they're doing the right thing.


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