During the first 10 or 15 minutes of the film, I thought I was in for a corny romance about a dedicated doctor, Remy, and his editor girlfriend, Pamela. I was genuinely surprised when Dr. Do Good stole hospital supplies to get high and was really taken aback when Pamela decided to follow Remy's example and started to shoot up. Pamela and Remy's descent into drug addiction is affecting and very gritty for a mainstream movie made in 1971. I'm sure the subject matter of white collar drug use was even more confronting back then than it is now.
I was interested to read that a significant amount of the film was edited out and re-shot because it was thought to be too bleak. This explains the jarring way in which lighter moments are interspersed into the action and the very annoying use of the (quite lovely) romantic score, which I think was intended to give the impression that the film really just a tragic love story. I'm sure the studio thought this would make the film more palatable to audiences but it just makes the story seem ridiculous. Nevertheless, the studio butchery does not entirely ruin the film. The performances by Michael Sarrazin and Jacqueline Bisset are great and the film does provide a fresh perspective on drug addiction.
I would really love to see the film as the director originally intended. I think "Believe In Me" is ripe for a director's cut on DVD, this is one of those rare films that seems more relevant today than when it was made. Recommended!