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Movie Review: ‘Protocol 7’ – A Not So Thrilling Dive into Vaccines and Corporate Fraud.



The subject of vaccines and their benefits versus potential effects seems perpetually contentious. Several films have attempted to navigate this complex conversation, bringing clarity and calling for accountability.

Protocol 7” is one such film, directed by Andrew Wakefield, who shares writing credits with Terry Rossio. The film, a drama thriller based on true events, highlights the whistleblower case involving Merck Pharmaceuticals and their alleged corporate fraud.

The narrative centres on Lexi, a small-town lawyer, whose life is in turmoil when she notices that her adopted son experiences catastrophic regression in his developmental markers. As Lexi seeks answers and accountability, she uncovers a web of corporate fraud. Her pursuit of justice puts her career at risk but also propels her on a path to expose the truth.

Lexi, portrayed by Rachel G. Whittle, and her husband, after several years of struggling to conceive, adopt a little boy. They later discover that he has autism, a condition Lexi believes is linked to the MMR vaccine he received. This personal connection drives Lexi’s fervent quest for justice.

During her investigation, Lexi encounters Dr. Jay (played by Matthew Marsden) a whistleblower and activist against Big Pharma’s questionable actions. Dr. Jay introduces her to Steve (played by Josh Murray) a virologist who works who works at the pharmaceutical company and is determined to expose fraudulent test results related to the MMR vaccine. Together, they delve into years of research to build a strong case of fraud against the powerful institution.

Protocol 7” purports to be based on true events, although it remains unclear how much of the story has been dramatized for cinematic effect. Rachel G. Whittle delivers an adequate performance as Lexi Koprowski, a family lawyer who suddenly develops a keen interest in corporate fraud. She delivers an okay role in her performance and has a few moments where she shows some brilliance in her emotional delivery.

Eric Roberts stands out as Errani, a top-level executive at the pharmaceutical company. Roberts delivers the best performance in the overall quality of acting in this film honestly. Even though he doesn’t have that many scenes in the film, he does well at embodying the stern boss who subtly coerces his scientists to produce favourable test results. His portrayal adds a layer of menace and realism to the narrative.

On the other hand, Josh Murray‘s portrayal of Steve feels somewhat lacklustre. Whether it was a deliberate choice to depict the character’s internal struggles or an indication of his difficulties with the role, his performance lacks the necessary impact to make the character truly compelling.

The film employs a narrative style that involves moving back and forth in time as Lexi and Dr. Jay uncover the pharmaceutical company’s dealings. This non-linear approach can be confusing initially, but it gradually pieces together the story. However, the film’s visual style resembles that of a TV movie rather than a theatrical release. While the visuals are decently bright and colourful, they do not present a unique style that enhances the viewing experience.

In the third act, the film presents a series of depositions led by Lexi. These scenes ramp up the intensity and suspense, but they fall short of delivering the adrenaline-pumping climax one might expect from a thriller. Instead, the audience is met with dialogue-heavy exchanges, questions, responses, and sneaky side remarks. Although some spur-of-the-moment emotions are visible, particularly in Lexi’s menacing smile and stern look, the film fails to deliver an emphatic conclusion to the issue of Merck Pharmaceuticals and their legal battles.

Andrew Wakefield‘s direction reminds us that we, the audience, are the jury. The epilogue states, “This film was made for you so that you might further explore these important issues and decide accordingly.” It invites viewers to delve deeper into the contentious subject of vaccine safety and corporate accountability.

Overall, if you are expecting an upbeat, action-packed thriller with science fiction elements, “Protocol 7” might disappoint you. The film is more of a slow-burn drama with a focus on corporate malfeasance and personal crusades for justice.

I would score this film 5/10. While it raises important questions and features some noteworthy performances, it ultimately falls short of delivering a gripping, edge-of-your-seat experience.

Second on my list of addictions is Movies.. the only thing I could possibly love more is my Dearest Waakye lol. Nothing else does a better job of reminding me that ANYTHING is possible with the right amount of effort. I have great eye for details and flaws in scripts. Shallow scripts bore me. I am an avid reader. Your everyday Mr Nice guy. Always the last to speak in a room full of smart people. Half Human, half Martian but full MOVIE FREAK.


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