The Good Nurse: Actuality Versus Hollywood

The Good Nurse: Actuality Versus Hollywood

Picture: Charles Cullen

Disclaimer: This text comprises spoilers in regards to the film and the next evaluation of the film doesn’t mirror the opinions of Nurse.Org however reasonably the opinions of this creator. 

There was numerous buzz lately about The Good Nurse, a brand new film now on Netflix. The film is predicated on a real story and the 2013 non-fiction e book written by Charles Graeber.  

If you happen to haven’t seen it, you would possibly need to test it out. It’s a couple of nurse, Charles “Charlie” Cullen, who was discovered responsible of 29 murders and considered chargeable for as many as 400 deaths over a 16-year interval at 9 completely different hospitals.  

So, how does the film maintain as much as the real-life story? 

The Film 

The film begins with a scene from St Aloysius Hospital in 1996. From the doorway of a affected person’s room, Charles Cullen stands again and watches the code workforce try to revive a affected person. The film then advances to 2003. 

Amy Loughren is a night-shift ICU nurse at Parkfield Memorial Hospital. The hospital is short-staffed, and Amy is below numerous stress. That sounds all too acquainted! Amy begins feeling wanting breath and experiencing chest ache. She learns she has cardiomyopathy and desires a coronary heart transplant. Round this time, she befriends a brand new night time shift nurse on the unit, Charlie Cullen. 

As a result of Amy has not labored on the hospital lengthy sufficient to qualify for medical insurance coverage, she makes an attempt to maintain her sickness a secret till her insurance coverage kicks in. Charlie retains her secret and helps her out at work and residential.  They grow to be shut pals. 

Each Charlie and Amy are single mother and father of two daughters. Though Charlie’s youngsters are by no means seen within the film as a result of his ex-wife has them, Amy’s two daughters are current. Charlie is closest to Amy’s oldest daughter, Alex. Neither Amy’s ex-husband nor Charlie’s ex-wife performs a task within the film, however Charlie does inform Amy his ex-wife is loopy and lies to him about abusing their canine. 

Simply earlier than Charlie begins on the unit, Amy takes care of Ana Martinez who was admitted for taking her husband’s amoxicillin which triggered an allergic response. Charlie assumes care of Mrs. Martinez the night time he hires on, and the following day she passes away on the day shift. 

Picture: Solid of The Good Nurse

Charlie and Amy be taught of Mrs. Martinez’s dying once they return to work that night time. She continues to be in her room, and her physique has not been correctly ready. As Amy and Charlie are making ready Mrs. Martinez’s physique, he tells her his mom died in a hospital and so they misplaced her physique for 2 hours. He says his reminiscence of his mother was mendacity half-naked in a hospital mattress. He tells Amy that caring for the our bodies is the necessary half for him. 

An investigation takes place at Parkfield Memorial Hospital over the unexplained dying of Mrs. Martinez. The 2 detectives investigating the case are Tim Braun and Danny Baldwin. They’ve a tough time investigating the case as a result of the hospital solely offers them with 4 pages of data seven weeks after the affected person’s dying. The affected person’s physique has additionally been cremated by the point the data is turned over to investigators.  

Within the film, it is vitally evident the hospital is aware of greater than they’re sharing with the investigators, and they’re hiding one thing. 

Linda Garran, Parkfield Memorial Hospital Threat Supervisor, and the hospital’s legal professional, Duncan Beattie have instructed all workers members to not communicate with the detectives except she is current. At Amy’s interview, Linda steps out of the room for a second and the detectives present Amy the toxicology report on Ana Martinez. Amy realizes Ana had insulin in her system, however she was not a diabetic. She tells them this can be a double medicine error. When Linda re-enters the room, they ask Amy about Charlie. She defends him and tells them he is an efficient nurse and would by no means make an error like that. 

Later, Amy is engaged on a code and turns into very exhausted. She goes to the med room to cover and catch her breath. Charlie is available in and opens the Pyxis, takes out an unknown medicine, and offers it to Amy to take. She tells him he will probably be fired for taking the medicine. Charlie reassures Amy there’s a fault with the Pyxis and that for those who cancel the medicine late sufficient the drawer will nonetheless open, but it surely received’t depend the medicine as taken. It’ll present canceled.  

Amy returns to the heart specialist and Charlie accompanies her. He encourages her to speak to her oldest daughter, Alex, simply in case one thing occurs whereas she is at dwelling. She agrees and so they discuss with Alex. Alex and Amy have a turbulent relationship as a result of Alex seems like Amy works an excessive amount of and doesn’t spend sufficient time together with her and her youthful sister, Maya. 

Again on the hospital, Amy is caring for a younger mom, Kelly Anderson. Kelly has been in a automobile accident however is in any other case wholesome. She is available in to verify on her later within the shift and finds her confused. Kelly codes and passes away. Amy sees that Kelly has insulin in her system despite the fact that she isn’t a diabetic.  

Amy returns dwelling to search out the detectives at her home. She thinks they’re there about Kelly’s dying, however they don’t even learn about Kelly. They inform her Charlie has been at 9 hospitals and not one of the hospitals will discuss to them. They ask her to assist them. She takes their card however tells them she can’t discuss as a result of her youngsters are dwelling. 

Now that Amy is suspicious, she meets together with her pal, Lori, who additionally labored with Charlie at one other facility. Lori tells Amy there was a rumor that Charlie was placing insulin in saline luggage within the storage room earlier than they ever went out to the affected person’s rooms. She tells her that they had two or three codes per night time, however after he give up, they solely had one monthly. She tells Amy they didn’t suspect him till after he left, and the codes decreased. 

Amy goes again to the hospital and finds a number of luggage within the ICU storage which have pinpricks in them. The stress from this realization causes her to faint on the ground on the facility. She awakens within the ER. Charlie is at her aspect. He affords her some water, however she is afraid to drink it. She rips out the IV and leaves AMA, however Charlie insists on driving her dwelling. 

Once they make it to her home, Charlie affords to sleep on the sofa, however Amy convinces him that she wants sleep, and he or she doesn’t need to scare the ladies. He agrees together with her and reminds her she solely has one month left till her insurance coverage takes impact. 

Amy instantly goes to the detectives with what she has discovered. She tells them how Charlie is committing the murders. She explains, as a result of he’s placing the deadly doses of medicine within the saline bag which is given slowly by means of an IV, the sufferers can die on any shift, not simply his. She additionally informs them that the Pyxis doesn’t delete the affected person’s data as they had been advised by Linda Garran. 

Amy affords to drag Charlie’s Pyxis report on Mrs. Martinez, however the detectives inform her since Mrs. Martinez was cremated, they don’t have a physique so it can do no good. 

Amy goes to speak with Kelly Anderson’s husband. He agrees to exhume Kelly’s physique to allow them to carry out an post-mortem. It exhibits Kelly died within the early morning hours of the fifteenth from insulin and digoxin. Charlie’s Pyxis report exhibits he pulled and canceled digoxin and insulin on the fourteenth.  

It’s about this time that Parkfield Memorial Hospital terminates Charlie. Their excuse is he put the mistaken dates on his utility. It’s obvious they know what he’s doing, however they’re attempting to cowl it up. The detectives and Amy discover out Charlie has been fired. 

When Amy arrives dwelling, Charlie is there, and he and her daughters have made dinner. She could be very nervous and makes the ladies go to their room. Alex will get indignant with Amy as a result of she likes Charlie. Charlie thinks Amy is upset as a result of he was fired. He tells her he was fired as a result of he wrote the mistaken dates on his utility. She convinces him to go away so she will be able to once more spend time together with her daughters, and he does. 

Carrying a wire, Amy meets with Charlie at a restaurant to see if she will be able to get him to speak about what he has been doing. He exhibits up in scrubs and tells her he’s beginning a brand new job in Elmsworth later that night. As she presses him for data, he tells her he doesn’t need to discuss Parkfield. As she continues to ask about Parkfield, he will get up and leaves abruptly. 

The police cease Charlie on his approach to Elmsworth, however they will solely maintain him for 48 hours. Detectives Braun and Baldwin interrogate him, however he won’t admit something. Amy goes to the police division. She nonetheless has compassion for the pal she knew, however she is aware of she should get him to admit. 

As Charlie is handcuffed to the desk within the interrogation room, Amy sits down beside him. She asks them to uncuff him, and they’re reluctant, however they do. Charlie tells her to go away, however she doesn’t. She covers him together with her sweater since he’s chilly and talks about all he did for her. 

She apologizes for going behind his again. She tells him she couldn’t perceive how he may kill anybody when he was so good to her. He tells her he simply needed to assist her, and he or she tells him she nonetheless wants him to assist her by telling the reality. At this level, Charlie confesses! 

Charlie tells Amy he “simply did it.” He tells her he can’t keep in mind all of the names, however she asks him to inform her who he can keep in mind. He names Douglas Stevenson, Ana Martinez, Kelly Anderson, Jack Adams, and a person on the final hospital with a German title. Amy asks Charlie why he did it, and he merely replied, they didn’t cease me.” 

The film ends with Alex waking Amy up for college, and Amy tells her they’re sleeping in for the day. They each smile at one another and lie again down. 

Film Versus Actuality 

Picture: Charles Cullen

It’s true, the actual Charles Cullen did inject medicine into the saline luggage of sufferers. Nonetheless, the film focuses solely on insulin and digoxin because the medication Charlie used to commit the murders. He truly used insulin and quite a lot of coronary heart medicines, not simply digoxin. 

In actual life, he labored at 9 completely different hospitals in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. All the hospitals suspected one thing however by no means turned him over to the State Board of Nursing.  He dedicated these crimes in opposition to his sufferers over 16 years. 

Charlie has by no means revealed his motive for the murders. Within the film, it leads you to consider it had one thing to do along with his mom’s dying. All Charlie has ever stated is, “I believed that individuals weren’t struggling anymore. So, in a way, I believed I used to be serving to.” Don’t be deceived although! Charles Cullen could also be referred to as the angel of dying, however he’s no angel! He’s a assassin! 

Within the film, Charlie named 4 victims. Throughout his real-life confession, he initially admitted to killing 12 to fifteen sufferers, and later he advised investigators it was in all probability 30 or 40 sufferers. He pled responsible to 29 murders, however it’s estimated his killing spree may embody near 400 murders. 

The sufferers’ names and the hospital settings had been modified within the film. The film begins in 1996, however Charlie started his killing frenzy in 1987, shortly after ending nursing faculty. 

Within the film, Amy’s daughter Alex is near Charlie. Nonetheless, Amy revealed in an interview with People who she talked with Alex earlier than agreeing to work with the detectives, and Alex advised her, “Mother, he’s murdering folks.” The film depicts her telling the detectives she can’t discuss to them as a result of her youngsters are dwelling. 

Amy did have a coronary heart situation, and he or she did obtain remedy for her situation. Amy is now a Reiki Grasp, Hypnotherapist, NLP Practitioner, Mediation Teacher, DreamSculptor Practitioner, Reconnective Healer, Integrative Power Healer, Previous Life Regressionist, Crystal Language Reader, and Medical Intuitive.


Picture: Amy Loughren

Charlie and Amy had been each divorced mother and father with two daughters. Charlie’s ex-wife did additionally accuse him of abusing their canine. 

Charles Cullen is at the moment serving 18 consecutive life sentences in New Jersey State Jail. He won’t be eligible for parole till 2403.  


Picture: The Good Nurse Solid

Total, I loved the film. I believe it appeals extra to individuals who like motion pictures primarily based on true crime in addition to nurses. I believe they did a fairly good job of staying near the true storyline. There are a couple of deviations to make it extra film applicable.  

I’ll say there’s one scene within the film that made me cringe. Amy leaves a code, and he or she is sitting on the ground within the med room when Charlie is available in. He provides her the medicine from the Pyxis, and he or she takes it…all whereas nonetheless sporting the gloves she had on through the code! Have you ever seen it already? Did you discover that one? 

As a nurse, I can’t think about harming any affected person. We’re speculated to handle our sufferers, not play Russian roulette with their lives! As for the amenities that didn’t cease him, it leaves one to take a position they lined this as much as keep away from lawsuits. It wasn’t in regards to the sufferers however about their pocketbooks! 

The Good Nurse on Netflix

Picture: The Good Nurse Solid

Solid Members: 

  • Charles Cullen – Eddie Redmayne 

  • Tim Braun – Noah Emmerich 

  • Danny Baldwin – Nnamdi Asomugha 

  • Linda Garran – Kim Dickens 

  • Duncan Beattie – David Lavine 

  • Alex Loughren – Alix West Lefler 

  • Maya Loughren – Devyn McDowell 

  • Kelly Anderson – Anjelica Bosboom 

  • Lori Lucas – Maria Dizzia 

Director – Tobias Lindholm 

Written for screenplay by Krysty Wilson-Cairns