Synopsis by Brian J. Dillard
Three victims of botched cosmetic surgery tell their stories in the one-hour made-for-cable documentary Plastic Disasters. Young professional Tony, the least serious case, finds himself in danger of permanent deformity after a faulty rhinoplasty and several increasingly risky corrective surgeries. The once-beautiful Lucille, meanwhile, finds herself looking far older than late middle age after a series of procedures, including two face-lifts and a nose job, leave her with folds of sagging skin all across her face and neck. Lucille also claims that she's unable to breath or swallow properly, though she is unable to obtain medical confirmation of these symptoms. Both patients' problems pale in comparison to those of Mona, a Florida retiree whose cut-rate liposuction indirectly leads to the loss of both legs during a lengthy near-death illness. Between interviews and footage chronicling its subjects' ongoing medical tribulations, Plastic Disasters provides statistical context and a brief history of cosmetic surgery. Spearheaded by producer/directors Kate Davis and David Heilbroner, the film premiered June 5, 2006, on HBO. Davis previously won an Emmy for Jockey, an earlier HBO project.