The theme is also named after one of Prince’s most famous songs: Let’s Go Crazy!
Share on your blog or in the comments section, movies you’ve watched that feature issues involving mental illness.
Here are my selections for this week’s Let’s Go Crazy theme.
Frankie & Alice
Halley Berry plays a 70s go-go dancer, a white supremacist and a 7 year-old “genius,” in this drama based on a true story about a woman suffering from dissociative personality disorder.
Leonardo DiCaprio plays a U.S. Marshall whose investigation into the disappearance of a patient at an asylum for the criminally insane causes him to doubt his own sanity among many other things, in this mystery thriller that also stars Mark Ruffalo.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
Jack Nicholson plays an inmate named McMurphy who is admitted to a ward for the mentally unstable after copping an insanity plea to avoid prison labor, in this drama. While serving his sentence, McMurphy rebels against the abuse he witnesses and endures at the hands of a tough nurse.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a troubled teen named Lyle whose impulsive and violent outbursts cause him to be committed to the juvenile psychiatric ward of a mental institution. There, a doctor named David Monroe, played by Don Cheadle, uses group therapy as part of the facility’s treatment for the spectrum of psychological problems affecting Lyle and other patients.
I once rented this movie on a whim because it stars Cheadle. The film made me more aware of how complex issues involving people with mental illness are, particularly given the challenges faced by the medical staff trying to help them have a better quality of life.
Tom Hanks plays a man who leads an eventful life including fighting in the Vietnam War, later opening a shrimping business and chasing his childhood sweetheart, despite having an intellectual disability, in this romantic comedy drama.
Tom Cruise plays an egotistical car salesman named Charlie who takes his autistic brother Raymond, played by Dustin Hoffman, on a cross-country road trip with the hidden agenda of nabbing millions of dollars in inheritance from their late father, in this drama.
Tony Moran and Nick Castle play a mental institution escapee named Michael Myers who returns to his hometown to kill high school students in this horror thriller.
A Beautiful Mind
Russell Crowe plays a mathematician named John Nash whose struggle with paranoid schizophrenia jeopardizes his career and family, in this biographical drama.
Bruce Willis plays a child psychologist named Malcolm Crowe who dedicates himself to helping a young boy suffering from hallucinations, in an attempt to resolve his inability to help a severely troubled former patient.
Don’t Say a Word
Michael Douglas plays a psychiatrist named Nathan Conrad who, after the kidnapping of his daughter, is tasked with retrieving a secret number from a young woman with PTSD named Elizabeth, played by Brittany Murphy, in this crime thriller. It was also among my previous Monday Movie Meme picks for a march madness twist on insanity, of all things!
While writing this post, I initially forgot about a few movies -- Manic, A Beautiful Mind and The Sixth Sense. Reading the comments sections of articles published by National Alliance on Mental Illness aided in my recollection of having watched these particular films. Although I can understand how Manic didn’t immediately come to mind while thinking of movies that fit the bill for this week’s Monday Movie Meme, my family went to see The Sixth Sense twice in theaters and I grabbed up A Beautiful Mind on DVD years ago, so it’s a damn shame those two flicks were just moments away from not being mentioned in my “Let’s Go Crazy” theme selections.
What movies featuring people dealing with mental illness would YOU add to this list?