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Movies & Mental Disorders

How the different #mental disorders (including #addictions) have been portrayed in #film history (as it was difficult to establish a criteria for what was considered a mental disorder, a neurological one or an addiction, I follow the different American Psychiatric Association's reference guide, the DSM classification)

10 powerful movies about drug addiction

Depression, suicide attemps, sleepwalking, anti-depressant medication side effects

Recuerda (1945), dirigida por Alfred Hitchcock y protagonizada por Ingrid Bergman y Gregory Peck

Piece of Mind, a Dance-Theatre documentary on bipolar disorder (via Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival)

If anyone is interested in or is studying psychology, you have to watch this movie. If neither well, watch it anyway. It's really good.

Elling (2001). The Reform of Psychiatric Care from the Point of View of the Mental Patient

Within the suffocating universe of the depressed Mile-End District in Montreal, Leo Lozeau, a member of a disturbing schizophrenia-ridden family attempts to escape his distressing existence building a delirium which can paradoxically keep him free from so much madness. The denial of his origins will be such that he will even make up a new freedom, becoming the Italianised Léolo Lozone. Familial #schizophrenia, #Catatonic schizophrenia, #Delirium

Away from Her by Sarah Polley with Julie Christie. A man coping with the institutionalization of his wife because of Alzheimer's disease faces an epiphany when she transfers her affections to another man, Aubrey, a wheelchair-bound mute who also is a patient at the nursing home.

Pictures & Photos from Away from Her (2006)

Antisocial personality disorder

Antisocial personality disorder. Robert Walker as Bruno Anthony in Hitchcock's Strangers on a Train is a classic example: charming, suave yet irritable, ready to respond angrily, bullying, guiltless and cold-blooded, Walker plays the character perfectly. (Dinesh Bhugra - doi: 10.1192/pb.27.11.429 )

Falcone, the imprisoned gangster of Batman Begins (2005) cuts his wrists so he can get to the Asylum, and fake an insanity plea. He is punished by being driven insane by Scarecrow.

In Primal Fear (1996), a sadistic murderer fakes cinema’s favourite diagnosis of multiple personality disorder. Only his lawyer (Richard Gere) figures it out in the end, by which time he has got his client off the charge of murder.

Me, Myself and Irene (2000) is the latest in a series of films depicting the psychiatric syndrome of Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). Wrongly billed as a “schizophrenia comedy”, it stars Jim Carrey as a state trooper “whose (two) split personalities fall for the same woman after he forgets to take his mood stabilisers”.1 The film is not about #schizophrenia, but it confuses this illness with DID. [doi:10.1136/mh.27.1.26]

From the 1980s, we laughed at the navel-gazing narcissism of people with mental illness. Recent films have intensified the cruelty of the humour. In Mad Dog Time (a.k.a. Trigger Happy, 1996), gangster Vic has been committed to the insane asylum, and his gang are told he’ll be released one personality at a time. #comedy #mentalhealth #mentalillness

In the report Screening Madness, written by British psychiatrist and film expert Dr Peter Byrne, in The Dark Knight “Batman describes the Joker as a schizophrenic clown, and when the film's second hero Harvey Dent becomes “Two-Face" and embraces evil, the familiar stereotype of schizophrenia is activated."

A great 1940 film ahead of its time foretelling the problems we now see with dieting diseases such as bulimia or anorexia. A weight loss guru lures in the small town women, creating body image issues and budding eating disorders. The hometown physician cites the lack of scientific evidence and dangers of the diet pills (amphetamines)

1901 Georges Méliès: L'omnibus des Toqués ou Blancs et Noirs. Depictions of people with mental illness did not begin well: Off to Bloomingdale’s Asylum (1901) was distributed in the UK as Off to Bedlam. This chase film used the much copied “escaped lunatics on the loose” formula. The film ends with their safe return to captivity.

Screening Madness; A century of negative movie stereotypes of #mental illness