20 Epic Movies And Shows About Mental Health

20 Epic Movies And Shows About Mental Health thewritejessie

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Sometime you just want something or someone to relate to.

This post goes through movies and tv shows that have characters that suffer from mental illness.

Not all of these movies and shows are uplifting and motivational.

Please be aware that some of the shows mentioned below can have triggering scenes such as suicide, suicidal attempts and self-harm.

There is a brief description included with each movie or tv show mention.

I have tried not to include any spoilers in this article.


Tv Series That Talk About Mental Health

1. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Rebecca Bunch is a lawyer who moves from New York to a small town to chase an ex-boyfriend, Josh, who she dated at summer camp when she was 16.

During the series, she receives a diagnosis of borderline personality disorder.

Rebecca has an on and off relationship with Josh’s friend, Greg while still continuously trying to reconnect with Josh.

The series about mental health follows her borderline personality behaviour and all the personal and romantic relationships that she struggles with.

  • This series has some musical scenes.

2. Mr. Robot

Elliot Alderson is the main character in this series. Elliot works in cybersecurity and connects to people by hacking them.

In the series, he is recruited by a hacking company to erase all consumer debt records in the worlds largest corporation.

He struggles with various mental illnesses; depression, social anxiety and dissociative identity disorder.


3. 13 Reasons Why

13 Reasons Why is based around teenager Clay Jensen, who has a crush on Hannah Baker; a fellow student who ultimately commits suicide.

Hannah leaves behind cassette tapes depicting the reasons why she took her life.

The tapes are picked apart and examined, and everyone involved tries to figure out what or who caused her suicide.

The series uncovers many secrets and features a school influenced heavily by jock-culture.

  • This series can have triggering scenes.

4. Sharp Objects

Sharp Objects follows news reporter Camille Preaker, who returns to her hometown after two young girls are murdered.

Camille has a history of alcoholism and self-harming and she also spends time in a mental hospital.

  • This is a miniseries and it is available on DVD and HBO

5. I’m Not Okay With This

This series about mental health is based on Sydney’s life, a 17-year-old teenager whos father committed suicide a year earlier.

The show follows her discovery that she possesses superpowers.

The struggle to deal with her powers is accompanied by her unreciprocated crush on her best friend.


6. My Mad Fat Diary

This series follows Rachel Earl (Rae), who finds it hard to fit in with people.

Rae is an overweight, 16-year-old girl who spends 4 months in a psychiatric facility.

Rae struggles to hide her mental health issues and her poor self-image from her best friend.


7. Spinning Out

Spinning out is a series about the Baker family and their struggle with mental illness.

Kat is a competitive ice-skater who has a terrible injury that threatens to ruin her career.

Kat teams up with Justin, forming an ice-skating duo while simultaneously dealing with mental health issues.

  • This series was cancelled after one season.


13 Movies That Talk About Mental Health

A Woman Under the Influence (1974)

Starring Gena Rowlands, Peter Falk

Mabel and her husband Nick live with their three children.

When Mabel starts displaying strange behaviour, Nick has her committed to a psychiatric facility.


One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)

Starring Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher 

After serving time in prison,  Randle McMurphy is transferred to a mental facility where he believes his sentence will be easier.

The tough nurse in the home has other ideas.


Girl, Interrupted (1999)

Starring Winona Ryder, Angelina Jolie.

Susanna Kaysen spends 18 months in a psychiatric hospital following a suicide attempt.

This movie about mental health follows her stay in the hospital and the stories of the other residents with whom she befriends.

Based on the book of the same name, Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen.


Prozac Nation (2001)

Starring Christina Ricci, Jason Biggs

Suffering from depression, a 19 year old Elizabeth “Lizzie” Wurtzel is accepted into Harvard to study Journalism.

The film depicts the struggle of depression, the recovery and other details about mental health.

Based on the memoir of the same name, Prozac Nation by Elizabeth Wurtzel.


Pleasureland (2003)

Starring Katie Lyon, Michael Dunn

Joanna is only 14 when she starts to feel peer pressured into losing her virginity and therefore makes a pledge to just get it done.


Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

Starring Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet

Follow the relationship of Joel Barish and Clementine Kruczynski who meet and realise they have been in a relationship before.


Shutter Island (2010)

Starring Leonardo Di Caprio, Michelle Williams

Edward “Teddy” Daniels is a U.S. Marshal who investigates what happened to a patient who goes missing from a psychiatric institution on Shutter Island.


Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence

Pat Solitano is a former teacher who spends time in a mental facility.

Upon his return he tries to patch things up with his ex-wife.


Perks Of Being A Wallflower (2012)

Starring Logan Lerman, Emma Watson

Charlie tells his story about mental health and living with depression and anxiety while trying to make friends in his first year of high school.


Gone Girl (2014)

Starring Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike

When Amy Dunne suddenly disappears, her husband Nick quickly becomes the prime suspect.

Secrets are revealed and it begins to emerge that Amy may have suffered from a personality disorder.


Welcome To Me (2014)

Starring Kristen Wiig, James Marsden

In this movie about mental health, Alice Kleig wins the prize in a lottery draw.

She stops taking her psychiatric medication and decides to launch her own tv talk show.


Flower (2017)

Starring Zoey Deutch, Kathryn Hahn

Erica lives with her mum and her mums boyfriend.

Bob has a son named Luke, who returns home from a rehabilitation facility.

Luke forms a friendship with Erica and they embark on illegal adventures.


All The Bright Places (2020)

Starring Elle Fanning, Justice Smith

In this film about mental health, Theodore Finch and Violet Markey meet coincidentally at the same time they both try to commit suicide.


Do you know any other awesome shows or movies that are about mental health?

Leave a comment below!


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