“He forgot the first rule of the drug game. Don't get high on your own supply.”
Life never turns out the way you planned it. Sometimes it does if you are lucky. Most of the people I know have had their lives shit on by reality and other mishaps. It sure as hell has happened to me. We also meet people we never thought we would meet and be friends with. Sometimes those people, both good and bad, shape you into the person you have become. We can change who we want to be, not drastically but steps at a time. (I am currently working on being a better me. It is hard fucking work!).
The character of Doug Varney in the movie Better Living Through Chemistry is a person who thought his life would go one way and met people that did change his life for the good and the bad. Doug has been working at his father-in-law’s pharmacy for years as a pharmacist. The father-in-law retired and instead of changing the name of the pharmacy to Doug’s last name the guy buys a new sign with his name on it. Doug does not even fight the situation he just lets his father-in-law walk all over him. His wife Kara also walks all over him. She does not let him get a word in edge wise and totally dominate him. Their son, who is twelve, is going through a weird awkward stage in his life. Instead of challenging all that is going on his life Doug lets things go because he does not want to deal with the confrontation.
A delivery of medications has to go out one night. One of the workers at the store takes advantage of Doug and just leaves to go somewhere leaving Doug to make the deliveries. The last person he goes to is a rich woman with several prescriptions. When he gets to the door the woman, Elizabeth (Olivia Wilde), is dressed only in a nightgown and some sort of jacket holding a cigarette. She has him come into the house. She is clearly a repressed woman. Her husband leaves her alone for days at a time while he works closer to the city and she has no one around to talk to. Before Doug leaves, Elizabeth plants a big kiss on him.
After that meeting with Elizabeth, Doug’s life becomes very different. She awakens passion and things in him he did not think he could ever do or feel. Elizabeth also gets Doug to make his own prescription cocktails to help his life out a little more. Doug goes from someone who was basically afraid of his own shadow to someone who seeks revenge and gains some control.
Elizabeth and Doug planned on killing her husband but of course that does not go well. Doug actually meets the husband at a bar and thinks the guy is nice. Instead of just running away Doug decides to leave Kara. He becomes more assertive and even tells his father-in-law he does not give a shit what he thinks anymore.
I liked the story of Better Living Through Chemistry. It was funny, dramatic, and even tense (I left out the tense parts they are too good to give away). I liked how this guy went from being walked all over to being this macho assertive guy all because of a woman and some mixed prescription drugs. I have never taken drugs to help me get through the day like Doug did (I do take Adderall for ADHD though. I do not know how I functioned through life without it) but I understand how meeting a certain person can help change your life and see things differently. The acting was good. It was weird to see Michelle Monaghan as this bitchy kind of woman who dominates her husband and represses things. Olivia Wilde was gorgeous and perfect as Elizabeth. Sam Rockwell played Doug. I do not believe I have ever seen him in anything else before. He was good he added a great craziness to his character. I say give Better Living Through Chemistry a watch it is worth seeing at least once.