Jonny Fritz

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Oceana, West Virginia used to thrive via the coal mining industry. It was a town where you could leave your door open to your house overnight and wake up knowing you were safe. Then things changed as the coal business began to decline. In response, the town eventually became the epicenter for Oxycontin abuse, resulting in a population largely of addicts. As doctors over-prescribed the drug, an industry was born when the only viable way to make money outside of the coal industry was to deal Oxy. Director Sean Dunne’s visceral documentary Oxyana, what many have nicknamed the town, is composed of a series of interviews with Oceana inhabitants – the overwhelming majority of them addicted to Oxy – and it doesn’t shy away from anything. Addicts of all ages are filmed snorting and injecting Oxy, they are filmed getting high, they are filmed coming down. They’re filmed smoking cigarettes inches away from their babies’ faces. They’re filmed smoking while pregnant. You might want to look away, but you can’t.

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published: 01.26.2015
B-, C-
published: 01.26.2015
published: 01.26.2015

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