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Hot Coffee (2011)

Hot Coffee review

Most of you have probably heard of the case in which an elderly lady spilled hot coffee on her lap, ended up suing McDonald’s and was awarded 2.1 million dollars. There was a lot of controversy around the case and the case has been used numerous times as an example of frivolous lawsuits. This documentary looks at this case and gets the facts straight, but also others and tries to show that most people don’t know the facts and that this has resulted in changes to the justice system that in the end only benefit the big corporations.

Hot Coffee review

The other cases which are shown in this documentary are shocking as well. One is about parents who were about to have twins and where checkups were not properly done. In the end it resulted in one of their sons not having had enough oxygen which resulted in brain damage. They went to court and won, but because of legislation they could not get the amount the jury had awarded them. Another case is of a Jamie Leigh Jones, who was drugged and raped by her coworkers at Halliburton and who, because of her contract wasn’t allowed to go to court to get justice.

One thing this documentary makes clear is that the justice system seems to have been slowly changing because of the amount of money corporations have been spending in campaigns to change public opinion, but also by backing specific judges up for election. It’s a worrying trend which makes you wonder how far this will go into the future. One example that is given is of forced arbitration, which basically takes away your right to go to a court and is becoming a standard in a lot of contracts for things people take for granted like a credit card of a phone. Of course there are valid examples of people suing just to make a quick buck, but in general it seems that changes in legislation are hurting people more than those lawsuits can and this documentary manages to make that clear.

Score: 8


Category: Documentary, Movies
  • le0pard13 says:

    You certainly have me intrigue about this one. Thanks for the heads-up.

    January 31, 2012 at 4:29 am
    • Nostra says:

      You are welcome!

      January 31, 2012 at 10:20 pm
  • Scott Lawlor says:

    The world is really in a sorry state huh? Interesting read of what sounds a very interesting film

    Thanks man

    January 31, 2012 at 11:42 am
    • Nostra says:

      Well, after having watched this documentary you will understand the steps and reasons why people sued and how the system is slowly getting worse and misused. SO it’s the system that seems to get into a sorry state.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:22 pm
  • Max says:

    I do remember hearing about the Hot Coffee case. Never thought they’d make a film around it. Interesting.

    January 31, 2012 at 3:46 pm
    • Nostra says:

      I didn’t either, but wanted to know more about it when I found out about this doc.

      January 31, 2012 at 10:22 pm
  • Colin says:

    This doc needed some opposing viewpoints, I reckon, but it was very interesting – and less about hot coffee than I imagined it to be!

    February 1, 2012 at 12:38 am
    • Nostra says:

      I agree that it was a bit one sided, but I don’t always expect documentaries to be objective….

      February 1, 2012 at 8:36 am
  • Raghav says:

    Wow… seems like an intense documentary. Obviously it’s more than just Hot Coffee. Added to my list which thanks to you is ever increasing ;-)

    February 1, 2012 at 8:15 am
    • Nostra says:

      :) It will probably be a very long list by now

      February 1, 2012 at 8:37 am

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