7.7/10
1,333
33 user 31 critic

Sick: The Life & Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist (1997)

Documentary about writer and performance artist Bob Flanagan who died at 43 of cystic fibrosis. His life was indicated by pain from the beginning and he started to develop sadomasochistic ... See full summary »

Director:

Reviews
3 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Documentary | Biography | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Documentary about notorious punk rock performer GG Allin.

Director: Todd Phillips
Stars: GG Allin, Merle Allin, Shireen Kadivar
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A man confronts the trauma of past sexual abuse as a boy by a Catholic priest only to find his decision shatters his relationships with his family, community and faith.

Director: Kirby Dick
Stars: Jeff Anderson, Barbara Blaine, David Clohessy
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Unblinking and unsettling, this documentary lays bare a mysterious process that goes on all around us - what happens to people who die with no next of kin.

Directors: Grover Babcock, Blue Hadaegh
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two individuals, Jeff and Kelly, claim to be in love with the 80's pop singer Tiffany.

Director: Sean Donnelly
Stars: Kelly McCormick, Tiffany, Jeff Turner
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Kirby Dick's exposé about the American movie ratings board.

Director: Kirby Dick
Stars: Kirby Dick, Kimberly Peirce, Darren Aronofsky
Outrage I (2009)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An indictment of closeted politicians who lobby for anti-gay legislation in the U.S.

Director: Kirby Dick
Stars: Barney Frank, Tammy Baldwin, Wayne Barrett
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In this cult doc from 1985, director Kirby Dick (This Film Is Not Yet Rated) weaves a fascinating study of the curious role of a sex surrogate in the then-new discipline of sexual therapy. ... See full summary »

Director: Kirby Dick
Stars: Maureen Sullivan, Warren Robert Jason, Noreen Hennesey
The End (TV Movie 2004)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

One of the most powerfully intimate films ever made about the final stages of life, The End is a profound and moving chronicle of five hospice patients whose stories are in turns honest, humorous, and heartbreaking.

Director: Kirby Dick
Stars: Sonia Woodfield
Documentary | Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Boy Interrupted looks at the life of Evan Perry a 15-year-old boy from New York who committed suicide in 2005. The film made by his parents Dana and Hart examines how Evan's bipolar ... See full summary »

Director: Dana Heinz Perry
Stars: Evan Scott Perry, Dana Heinz Perry, Hart Perry
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A cinematic portrait of the life and career of the infamous American execution device designer and holocaust denier.

Director: Errol Morris
Stars: Fred A. Leuchter Jr., Robert Jan Van Pelt, David Irving
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Documents 18 months in the lives of three crack addicts in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Directors: Maryann DeLeo, Richard Farrell
Stars: Dicky Eklund
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

This documentary follows the lives of a number of heroin addicts in the U.S.A. It shows their heroin life stories.

Director: Steven Okazaki
Stars: Malice McMunn
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Kathe Burkhart ...
Interviewer
...
Interviewer
Bob Flanagan ...
Himself
Sheree Rose ...
Herself
...
Interviewer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sarah Doucette ...
Herself
Richard Kopelle ...
Himself
Edit

Storyline

Documentary about writer and performance artist Bob Flanagan who died at 43 of cystic fibrosis. His life was indicated by pain from the beginning and he started to develop sadomasochistic practices, which he developed finally into performances. Written by Soeren Ney <SoerenNey@AOL.COM>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Diastrofi: I zoi kai o thanatos tou Bob Flanagan  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$86,917 (USA) (21 November 1997)

Gross:

$116,806 (USA) (5 December 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot over a period of two years and compiled from over 100 hours of footage. See more »

Quotes

Bob Flanagan: I want a wealthy collector to finance an installation in which a video camera will be placed in the coffin with my body, connected to a screen on the wall, and whenever he wants to, the patron can see how I'm coming along.
See more »

Connections

Spoofs Mary Poppins (1964) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
No pain, no gain
12 February 2003 | by (Toronto, Cana-duh) – See all my reviews

One of the most disturbing, disgusting, funny, touching, and beautiful films ever made. It's hard to find the words to properly describe this bio-pic of Bob Flanagan (one of the longest survivors of Cystic Fibrosis) but perhaps the best word is simply "raw".

Sure it's got a shot of a person nailing their privates to a block of wood while "If I had a hammer" plays cheerfully in the background. But that doesn't mean the film aims to offend or make the audience vomit. What's at the heart of this film is one mans lifelong struggle with a painfully fatal illness (CF). It's only through his embrace of the pain that he was able to live such a long and successful life (poet, comedian, and performance artist) and his ability to inspire and live his life to the fullest is something several many 'able bodied' people could only dream of.

Most touching is the scene where Bob is visited by a young Toronto girl with CF who wanted to meet him as part of the 'Make a Wish' Foundation (yes, you read correctly). When the film was screened at the Toronto Film Fest that same young girl was present (and a few years older) and attributed her prolonged life to the example set by Bob Flanagan.

Nails and blocks of wood aside, this film is NOT for everyone. In fact it's for a small few. It is very real and very powerful. But if you can stomach it, you'll see what a great documentary should look like.


13 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anyone else thought his wife was a bitch? Polygraph
'The' Scene thehashkiller
What happened to Sara? michalrose-1
This is.... poosthuman
jewish funeral?? KinkyAngel526

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?