On Monday, HBO released its much-anticipated documentary “Heroin: Cape Cod, USA,” which follows the lives of eight addicts in the Massachusetts vacation capital.
The film’s release has been widely covered in local media. Gov. Charlie Baker, who is currently pushing for an opioid bill as it makes its way through the State House, held a screening for the film earlier this month.
The size and scope of Massachusetts’ opioid epidemic is well known, especially to those living in the state. Deaths tied to heroin topped 1,000 last year, a 63 percent bump over 2012.
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“Heroin” brings an unvarnished look at that reality to the world.
On social media, reviews of the documentary, directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Steven Okazaki, have been largely positive.
my whole mind set has changed after watching the heroin film on cape cod, please think about what you are doing b4 you try a harmful drug— zoë cann (@zoecann613) December 29, 2015
I just finished watching Heroin:Cape Cod, USA. I found it stunningly sad, yet informative as to how quickly one can become an addict.— Pete (@petephil3) December 29, 2015
Parents: Last night's @HBODocs on heroin abuse on Cape Cod is a must see. Watch with your preteens/teens. Message: any kid is susceptible.— Ian & Nick + 2 (@ianandnick) December 29, 2015
I don't watch much TV but check out the special on HBO: Heroin:Cape Cod USA. It will completely open your eyes to this tragic crisis.— Joel Brenner (@Brenner1Joel) December 29, 2015
That HBO documentary on Heroin in Cape Cod was depressing and scary. We have a serious problem in this state, hopefully it raises awareness.— D U (@HereCuzOfSheen) December 29, 2015
Watching Heroin: Cape Cod reminds me why I left and yet still absolutely breaks my heart watching my hometown suffering from drug abuse.— Ashley Crosby (@ashleyecrosby) December 29, 2015
"Heroin: Cape Cod, USA" was heartbreaking, hit too close to home, and eye-opening. It still left me with a lot of questions.— olivia (@ohhhIivia) December 29, 2015
Some, though, said the film focused too much on the gritty details of addicts’ lives, while offering few solutions to the heroin abuse problem.
HBO documentary on heroin in Mass. fell flat. I say this for a few reasons. First, it offered no hope or solution to parents or addicts.— Steve Annear (@steveannear) December 29, 2015
Second, it played into the same storyline we know and hear about daily. Heroin is bad here, kids are dying, it's an epidemic.— Steve Annear (@steveannear) December 29, 2015
Lastly, all it showed was how to shoot up. I now know the step by step instructions to shoot dope, and where to shoot it: neck, arm, foot...— Steve Annear (@steveannear) December 29, 2015
That documentary just felt like an outsider saw an opportunity to capitalize on a crisis to display on a national level. #HBO— Steve Annear (@steveannear) December 29, 2015
This Heroin in Cape Cod documentary HBO got, is almost glorifying the drug smh, show all these problems but don't offer solutions...— Power, I (@iPower_elevated) December 29, 2015
Others couldn’t help but notice how often Dunkin’ Donuts makes cameos in the lives of the documentary’s subjects, who are seen ordering extra-extras at the drive-through, plotting deals in the coffee chain’s bathrooms and sipping iced coffees on the way into detox.
While watching a documentary on heroin addicts in Cape Cod I learned is they fucking love Dunkin' Donuts.— King Vel the First (@Slcarter85) December 29, 2015
Like INTELLECTUALLY I know that it's not funny how prominently featured Dunkin Donuts is in this Cape Cod heroin documentary BUUUUUT... 💁🏻— Becca (@talestospin) December 29, 2015
That HBO doc on Heroin addiction on Cape Cod didn't do Dunkin Donuts any favors.— John Doyle (@johnrdoyleIV) December 29, 2015
Still processing but there was a LOT of Dunkin Donuts in Heroin: Cape Cod. Logo, locations, cups.— Caroline Kepnes (@CarolineKepnes) December 29, 2015
DunkinDonuts can't be too excited about how much press they get in the cape cod heroin documentary— THE KID (@BimTusa) December 29, 2015
Heroin: Cape Cod was 75% drugs and 25% dunkies— Emily G (@garbeaar) December 29, 2015