Addiction & Alcoholism

 email page    print page

All Topic Reviews
AddictionsA Can of MadnessA Drop of the Hard StuffA Million Little PiecesAA: Not the Only WayAddicted Like MeAddictionAddictionAddictionAddiction and ArtAddiction and ChangeAddiction and ResponsibilityAddiction Is a ChoiceAddiction NeuroethicsAddiction Recovery ToolsAddiction TrajectoriesAddiction TreatmentAddictive BehaviorsAdvances in the Neuroscience of AddictionAlternatives to AbstinenceBeautiful BoyBeyond AddictionBlackoutBlameBodies in Motion and at RestBrokenCaught in the NetChasing the HighChasing the ScreamCircles of RecoveryCloserCodependent ForevermoreControlling Your Drinking: Tools to Make Moderation Work for YouCrackedCreating the American JunkieCybersexDirtyDrinkingDrinking in AmericaDrug Dealer, MDDrunk the Night BeforeDrunkardDryDuplicityEcstasyForces of HabitFree RefillsFrom Sabotage to SuccessGetting HookedGetting OffGetting WastedHigh PriceHookedHow to Spot Hidden Alcoholicshow to stop timeHypnosis for Smoking CessationIf I Die Before I WakeIllness or Deviance?In the Shadows of the NetLeaving Las VegasLitLithium for MedeaLiving With One’s PastLove JunkieMatters of SubstanceMemoirs of an Addicted BrainMethadoniaModerate DrinkingMore, Now, AgainMy Friend LeonardNever EnoughOver the InfluencePorn NationPowerfully Recovered!Rachel Getting MarriedRachel's HolidayReal Solutions for Overcoming Internet AddictionsRecovery from AddictionRecovery OptionsRequiem for a Dream DVDSex Addiction as Affect Dysregulation Sex Addiction: The Partner's PerspectiveShameShe Bets Her LifeSmackSmashedSmashedStop Smoking and Chewing Tobacco for Life ChangesStrong FeelingsSubstance Abuse As SymptomTackling AddictionTalking Oneself SoberThe 5 Reasons Why We OvereatThe AddictThe AlcoholicThe Angry HeartThe Behavioral AddictionsThe Betty Ford Center Book of AnswersThe Big FixThe Biology of DesireThe Book of JamaicaThe Chemical Dependence Treatment PlannerThe Heart of AddictionThe Meaning of AddictionThe Night of the GunThe RecoveringThe Science of AddictionThe Science of Self-ControlThe Sober TruthTheory of AddictionThinking about AddictionTreating AddictionTweakUS of AAVirtual AddictionVoices of AlcoholismWhat Did I Do Last Night?What is Addiction?Writing to Heal

Related Topics
SmashedReview - Smashed
by James Ponsoldt (Director)
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, 2013
Review by Christian Perring
Apr 22nd 2014 (Volume 18, Issue 17)

Kate and Charlie are married living in Los Angeles; they are played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Aaron Paul. They are a young attractive couple who have a lot of fun.  But they are both big drinkers.  Kate wakes up hungover and needs a couple of drinks in the morning to get her started.  She teaches elementary school and her kids love her.  She throws up in the classroom and she explains it by saying she is pregnant.  But she tells the truth to one of her colleagues, Dave (played by Nick Offerman, of TV's Parks and Recreation.  She scares herself soon after when she ends up smoking crack, and she starts to think she needs to stop drinking.  After things get even worse, she finally reaches a crisis.  At work,  Dave tells her that he is a recovering alcoholic, and he takes her to an AA meeting.  Kate starts with the program, and she gets into it.  This causes tension between her and Charlie, because he is still drinking, and so they are not having much fun together.  Kate finds a sponsor, Jenny (played by Octavia Spencer), in AA who helps her come to terms with her life.  But she continues with her lie at work about being pregnant, and that means lying to both her boss (played by Megan Mullally) and the children in her class.  Eventually, she needs to be honest with them, but this gets her into trouble, and she loses her job.  That leads to a relapse and even greater problems in her marriage.

Smashed is a short movie at 81 minutes, so it is easy to watch.  The acting is powerful and the camerawork is mostly handheld, which makes it all feel spontaneous and real.  We see Kate struggle with her need to drink and there are recreations of some AA meetings.  Kate is not completely sold on all the ideas in AA but she finds it useful.  On a visit to her mother, we see how Kate learned from her family to deal with all her problems by drinking.  The relationship between Kate and Charlie is really strong and the connection between them comes through very clearly, which makes their fights all the more upsetting.  The strength of the movie is in giving a believable portrayal of what it is like for a young woman to come to terms with her dependence on alcohol and overcome it.  While it is obviously very difficult for Mary, it might still be a bit too optimistic, showing only one relapse.  Very often people have more setbacks than that.  Maybe it is good not to give too grim a picture of the recovery process.


© 2014 Christian Perring


Christian Perring, Professor of Philosophy, Dowling College, New York


Welcome to Metapsychology.

Note that Metapsychology will be moving to a new server in January 2020. We will not put up new reviews during the transition. We thank you for your support and look forward to coming back with a revised format.

We feature over 8300 in-depth reviews of a wide range of books and DVDs written by our reviewers from many backgrounds and perspectives. We update our front page weekly and add more than twenty new reviews each month. Our editor is Christian Perring, PhD. To contact him, use one of the forms available here.

Metapsychology Online reviewers normally receive gratis review copies of the items they review.
Metapsychology Online receives a commission from for purchases through this site, which helps us send review copies to reviewers. Please support us by making your purchases through our Amazon links. We thank you for your support!

Join our Google Group!

Interested in becoming a book reviewer for Metapsychology? To apply, write to our editor.

Metapsychology Online Reviews

Promote your Page too

Metapsychology Online Reviews
ISSN 1931-5716