"There are moments that I look at him, this kid that I raised, who I thought I knew inside and out, and I wonder who he is. He's been doing all sorts of drugs, but he's addicted to Crystal Meth," the father pleads out.
The scene switches and shows the stressed out father staying up all night waiting for his son to come home, but unfortunately he doesn't. A wall filled with portraits of the father and his son appears on the camera and the words "BEAUTIFUL BOY" appear on the screen.
"Beautiful Boy" is a drama based on the true story of father and son, David and Nic Sheff.
David and Nic Sheff are portrayed by Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet. The film grasps the heartbreaking reality of what it is like when one suffers from addiction. It shows the high points and it shows the very low points.
The film goes back and forth between David Sheff's memory of his son, Nic, when he was younger. When Nic was younger they had an unbreakable bond. They bonded over music and Nic told his father just about everything.
However, in his senior year of high school, that bond seemed to stray away when Nic hid the fact that he was doing drugs from his father.
In the film, Nic is put into rehab quite a few times, but unfortunately, he relapses. David learns that relapse is part of recovery. There comes a point in the film where Nic goes to live with his mother, after completing his rehabilitation program.
Nic is 14 months sober and goes to visit his dad, his step mom, and his siblings. When it was his time to go, he felt very sad to leave his family. On his way back to his mother's house, he got consumed by his sadness and he relapsed.
Just as the film is a rollercoaster ride, so is the battle with drug addiction. Some days are harder than others and "Beautiful Boy" demonstrated that all throughout the film.
The beauty of this film isn't only found in the riveting performances of the actors, but it is also found in the raw portrayal of drug addiction. This film shows that addiction is NOT a choice. This film shows that addiction is not a character flaw, but a disease. This film shows that the stigma around drug addiction needs to be eliminated.
This film is extremely important in this day and age. Deaths caused by drug overdoses are unfortunately sky-rocketing in the United States. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, over 700,000 people have died due to a drug overdose in the course of 18 years.
Addiction is a serious illness and when films like "Beautiful Boy" come out, they allow you to see the pain it causes — not only does the one suffering from addiction feel pain but so does their entire family.
"Beautiful Boy" is a hurricane of heavy emotions. It will make you laugh, it will make you smile, it will make you think and it will make you cry. It is a film that sheds light on an epidemic that many need to open their hearts and minds to.
Thank you to Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet for delivering such exceptional performances. Thank you to David and Nic Sheff for sharing your emotional and beautiful story with the whole world.
If you know anyone suffering from addiction, know that help is out there.
You can call Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357), where they will guide you and give you the help needed.