4 Movies About Mental Illness

Numerous studies suggest that the majority of mental illness cases are never actually diagnosed.

Whether you think you have a mental illness or not; don’t be afraid of mental illness- be informed. Awareness is the enemy of stigma! These four movies portray a glimpse of what it may be like to experience mental illness.

  1. Schizophrenia: A Beautiful Mind

    A Beautiful Mind, is a biographical drama based on the life of the brilliant Nobel Laureate mathematician John Nash, played by Russell Crow. Nash was diagnosed with schizophrenia in his late 30s, and the movie illustrates the patient perspective of schizophrenia. The audience experiences Nash’s delusional interpretation of reality throughout the triumphs and trials of his accomplished life
  2. Bipolar Disorder: Silver Linings Playbook

    In Silver Linings Playbook Bradley Cooper plays a man with bipolar disorder coming to terms with his diagnosis after spending time in a mental health hospital. The movie captures the range of emotions that span bipolar disorder, from the mania to the meltdowns. It also shows demonstrates how crucial an accepting support network is for someone with a mental illness.
  3. ADHD: Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief

    Percy Jackson is a high school boy who struggles with ADHD. He’s having a lot of trouble in school until the day he discovers that he’s Poseidon’s son. Following this reveal, he’s swept up into an action-packed adventure, and along the way realizes that the traits associated with ADHD that he once saw as weaknesses could actually be embraced as strengths in some situations. His ADHD allows him to adapt quickly in intense battles with Olympic gods. Percy becomes an ADHD hero who shows kids with learning differences that they are capable of anything!
  4. Depression: Inside Out

    Inside Out isn’t about depression, but it does communicate an important message to the millions of people touched by depression– it’s okay not to be okay. The movie depicts the way our minds work when they’re healthy and how they work when they’re ill, and concludes that openly expressing emotions and confiding in others is the path to resolution. Don’t put on a happy face if you need help.

Movies may be dramatized. If you’re interested in learning more about mental illnesses, please visit NAMI.

If you or a loved one is affected by schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, ADHD, or depression, call us at 1-877-734-2588 or fill out the prescreen form below to see if you qualify for a clinical research study.


Sources: NAMI blog, Childmind.org, ADDCA

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