In recent years, there have been an influx of movies with mental health as a central theme. This is likely due to the growing awareness of mental health issues and the stigma surrounding them. These movies can be incredibly powerful, providing insight into the lives of those struggling with mental illness. They can also be entertaining and offer a different perspective on mental health.
1. A Beautiful Mind
A Beautiful Mind is a 2001 American biographical drama film directed by Ron Howard and written by Akiva Goldsman. It is based on the life of John Nash, a Nobel Laureate in Economics. The film stars Russell Crowe, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly, Paul Bettany, Adam Goldberg, Judd Hirsch, and Christopher Plummer.
The film was inspired by a bestselling, unauthorized biography of Nash by Sylvia Nasar. The story begins in the early years of Nash’s life as a student at Princeton University. It then covers his years as a graduate student at Carnegie Mellon University and his work on Game theory at the RAND Corporation during the Cold War.
Nash begins to develop paranoid schizophrenia and endures delusional episodes while secretly being monitored by agents of the United States government.
2. Silver Linings Playbook
Silver Linings Playbook is a must-see for anyone interested in learning more about mental health or simply wants to watch a good movie.
A psychiatric patient tries to win over the love of his life by helping her deal with her own mental issues in Silver Linings Playbook.
The movie, Silver Linings Playbook, is a rare gem that realistically portrays mental health and its various treatments. The main character, Pat, is an example of someone who lives with bipolar disorder. The movie does an excellent job of showing how mental illness can both negatively and positively affect those around him.
Pat’s wife, Tiffany, is also struggling with her own mental health issues. She turns to Pat for help in dealing with her grief and depression. The two characters help each other overcome their respective challenges and eventually find happiness together.
3. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Mental health is often stigmatized in our society. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a movie that sheds light on mental health in a realistic way.
The movie follows the story of Charlie, a high school student who is struggling with mental health issues. The movie is important because it shows that mental health issues are real and that they can be faced with strength and courage.
4. It’s Kind of a Funny Story
It’s Kind of a Funny Story is a 2010 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. The film stars Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, and Viola Davis. It’s Kind of a Funny Story is based on the 2006 novel of the same name by Ned Vizzini.
The film follows 16-year-old Craig Gilner (Gilchrist), who checks himself into an inpatient psychiatric facility after experiencing suicidal ideation. Craig meets other patients at the hospital, including Noelle (Roberts), Bobby (Galifianakis), and Muqtada (Jacques Colimon). As Craig gets to know his fellow patients, he begins to understand that his experience is not unique and that mental illness does not discriminate.
5. The Fault in Our Stars
The Fault in Our Stars is a movie that explores the topic of mental health in a unique and interesting way. The movie follows the story of two teenagers who meet and fall in love at a cancer support group. Both of them are dealing with serious illnesses, but they find comfort and strength in each other.
The Fault in Our Stars is a moving and thought-provoking film that helps to break down the stigma surrounding mental health. It is an important reminder that we all have our own struggles, but we can get through them together.
6. Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl
Mental health is a topic that is often ignored or swept under the rug. It’s time to start talking about it. “Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl” is a movie that does just that. The film follows Greg Gaines, a high school senior who befriends Rachel Kushner, a girl who has been diagnosed with leukemia.
Through their friendship, Greg starts to learn more about himself and what it means to be there for someone else. He also learns about the importance of mental health and how it can affect everyone around him. “Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl” is a powerful film that will leave you thinking about your own mental health and how you can help those around you.
7. To the Bone
Mental health is a difficult topic to broach. It’s even harder to watch a movie about it. To the Bone, a new film on Netflix, does just that. The film follows Ellen, a 20-year-old with anorexia nervosa, as she enters her fifth treatment facility. Throughout the film, Ellen struggles with her disorder and the people who try to help her.
To the Bone is an unflinching look at mental illness and will likely leave viewers feeling uncomfortable. However, it’s an important film that highlights the struggles of those with eating disorders. If you’re looking for a lighthearted movie, this isn’t it. But if you’re interested in exploring the dark side of mental health, To the Bone is definitely worth watching.
8. A Separation (2011)
A Separation is a 2011 Iranian drama film written and directed by Asghar Farhadi, starring Leila Hatami, Peyman Moaadi, Shahab Hosseini, Sareh Bayat, and Sarina Farhadi. The film follows a married couple who decide to separate, and the hardships that arise from their decision.
The film explores the themes of marriage, divorce, infidelity, and motherhood. It also examines the impact of mental illness on a family. A Separation received critical acclaim, with many praising its direction, writing, and performances. The film won several awards, including the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
9. Black Swan
In the 2010 film Black Swan, Natalie Portman plays a ballerina who becomes increasingly mentally unstable as she prepares for a role in which she must play both the white swan and the black swan. The movie is a psychological thriller that explores the dark side of the ballet world and the mental illness that can come with it.
10. A Streetcar Named Desire
Tennessee Williams’ Pulitzer Prize winning play, A Streetcar Named Desire, explores the deteriorating mental state of Blanche DuBois.
The classic play is set in New Orleans in the late 1940’s and follows Blanche as she moves in with her sister Stella and her husband Stanley. Blanche is an alcoholic who is struggling to deal with her past, which includes the death of her young husband and the loss of her family home.
She is also facing eviction from the apartment she has been living in. As her mental state deteriorates, she becomes more and more reliant on alcohol. This ultimately leads to her downfall.
11. Girl, Interrupted
Girl, Interrupted is a 1999 American psychological drama film directed by James Mangold, based on Susanna Kaysen’s 1993 memoir of the same name. The film chronicles Kaysen’s 18-month stay at a mental hospital in the 1960s.
The film stars Winona Ryder as Kaysen, Angelina Jolie as Lisa Rowe, a patient with borderline personality disorder, and Whoopi Goldberg as Dr. Clara Francis. The cast also includes Brittany Murphy, Jared Leto, and Clea DuVall.
Girl, Interrupted was released on December 21, 1999 to mixed reviews from critics but was a box office success grossing over $48 million worldwide.
In the 1988 film Rainman, Dustin Hoffman stars as Raymond Babbitt, a man with autism who is taken advantage of by his brother, Charlie (played by Tom Cruise). The movie was a huge success, grossing over $350 million at the box office.
But what many people don’t realize is that the film is actually based on a true story. In the early 1970s, Kim Peek was born with severe brain damage that left him with the mental capacity of a two-year-old. He also had savant syndrome, which meant he had exceptional abilities in memory and other areas.
Kim’s father, Fran Peek, decided to dedicate his life to helping his son. He taught Kim how to read and write, and eventually helped him learn over 12000 books.
13. 12 Monkeys
12 Monkeys is a movie about a man with mental illness who is sent back in time to prevent a future pandemic.
The movie follows the story of Cole, a man who is diagnosed with a mental illness and is sent back in time to prevent a future pandemic. The movie explores the themes of mental illness and time travel, and how they can affect one’s life.
The movie was directed by Terry Gilliam and stars Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, and Brad Pitt. The film was released in 1995 and received critical acclaim.
14. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, a worth to watch movie about mental illness, was released in 1975. The movie, based on the novel by Ken Kesey, starred Jack Nicholson and featured an Oscar-winning performance by Louise Fletcher. The movie was directed by Milos Forman and also won Oscars for Best Picture and Best Actor.
15. The roommate
The hit horror movie “The Roommate” is based on a true story of mental illness and terror. In the film, Sara finds herself the target of her roommate’s psychotic obsession. The story is a chilling reminder of how quickly mental illness can turn deadly.
Sara (Leighton Meester) is a college freshman who is excited to start her new life away from home. She soon meets her new roommate, Rebecca (Minka Kelly), and the two become fast friends. But when Sara starts to see strange changes in Rebecca’s behavior, she begins to worry that something is wrong.
As Rebecca becomes more and more fixated on Sara, her behavior grows increasingly erratic and dangerous. Sara realizes that she is in grave danger and must find a way to escape before it’s too late.
16. De Zaak Alzheimer
De Zaak Alzheimer film is a Dutch documentary that tells the story of several people with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers. The film was directed by Peter Lataster and Pieter-Rim de Kroon and released in 2003.
The film follows the lives of several people with Alzheimer’s disease, as well as their caregivers. The film shows the struggles and challenges that these individuals face on a daily basis. It also highlights the importance of support and care from family and friends.
De Zaak Alzheimer is an important film that sheds light on a often misunderstood disease. It is a must-see for anyone who wants to better understand the challenges faced by those with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers.
17. Shutter Island
When it comes to mental illness, the movies don’t always get it right. But one film that does an admirable job of depicting the experience of mental illness is Shutter Island.
The 2010 film, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, tells the story of a man who is committed to an asylum for the criminally insane after his wife is brutally murdered. It’s a gripping tale that does a good job of showing how mental illness can distort reality.
While the film has been criticized for its portrayal of violence, it’s important to remember that Shutter Island is a work of fiction. The events that take place in the movie are not meant to be taken as fact. Instead, they’re meant to give viewers a taste of what it’s like to live with a mental illness.
Why to them ?
Movies about mental health can have a significant impact on how we think and feel about those who suffer from conditions like anxiety and depression. While some argue that these films help to increase understanding and empathy, others worry that they may perpetuate harmful stereotypes. So, does watching movies about mental health help or hurt?
On the one hand, movies about mental health can be a powerful way to increase understanding and awareness of these conditions. They can help to destigmatize mental illness, and make it easier for people to talk about their own experiences. Additionally, they can provide a much-needed outlet for people who are struggling with their mental health.
On the other hand, there is a risk that movies about mental health could perpetuate harmful stereotypes. For example, they might portray those with mental illness as dangerous or unpredictable, which could make people more fearful of them.