Movies Depicting Mental Illness

by breadmanpaul | last updated - 27 Apr 2013 | Public

Mental illness is the main thematic element of many movies. Yet, IMDB does not include a genre for mental illness. Thus, here is a growing list of movies that specifically deal with mental illness. Because there are so many movies of this type, I cannot hope to list them all. Nonetheless, consider Mental Illness a heretofore repressed genre.

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1. A Beautiful Mind (2001)

PG-13 | 135 min | Biography, Drama

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
72 Metascore

After John Nash, a brilliant but asocial mathematician, accepts secret work in cryptography, his life takes a turn for the nightmarish.

Director: Ron Howard | Stars: Russell Crowe, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly, Christopher Plummer

Votes: 691,105 | Gross: $170.74M

Schizophrenia.

2. 28 Days (2000)

PG-13 | 103 min | Comedy, Drama

6.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  
46 Metascore

A big-city newspaper columnist is forced to enter a drug and alcohol rehab center after ruining her sister's wedding and crashing a stolen limousine.

Director: Betty Thomas | Stars: Sandra Bullock, Viggo Mortensen, Dominic West, Elizabeth Perkins

Votes: 37,353 | Gross: $37.17M

Drug Addiction

3. Canvas (2006)

PG-13 | 101 min | Drama

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
67 Metascore

A woman's schizophrenia affects her relationships with her husband and son.

Director: Joseph Greco | Stars: Griffin Miner, Marcia Gay Harden, Devon Gearhart, Julie Upton

Votes: 909 | Gross: $0.03M

Schizophrenia

4. Girl, Interrupted (1999)

R | 127 min | Biography, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
51 Metascore

Based on writer Susanna Kaysen's account of her 18-month stay at a mental hospital in the 1960s.

Director: James Mangold | Stars: Winona Ryder, Angelina Jolie, Clea DuVall, Brittany Murphy

Votes: 136,903 | Gross: $28.87M

Borderline Personality Disorder

5. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

R | 133 min | Drama

8.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  
80 Metascore

A criminal pleads insanity after getting into trouble again and once in the mental institution rebels against the oppressive nurse and rallies up the scared patients.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman, Peter Brocco

Votes: 752,655 | Gross: $112.00M

6. The Three Faces of Eve (1957)

Approved | 91 min | Drama, Mystery

7.2
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A doctor treats a woman suffering from Multiple Personality Disorder.

Director: Nunnally Johnson | Stars: Joanne Woodward, David Wayne, Lee J. Cobb, Edwin Jerome

Votes: 6,059

Multiple Personality Disorder or Dissociative Personality Disorder

7. Analyze This (1999)

R | 103 min | Comedy, Crime

6.7
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61 Metascore

A comedy about a psychiatrist whose number one patient is an insecure mob boss.

Director: Harold Ramis | Stars: Robert De Niro, Billy Crystal, Lisa Kudrow, Chazz Palminteri

Votes: 131,315 | Gross: $106.89M

Depression and Anxiety

8. Analyze That (2002)

R | 96 min | Comedy, Crime

5.9
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37 Metascore

Mobster Paul Vitti is released into Dr. Ben Sobol's care, where only more chaos ensues.

Director: Harold Ramis | Stars: Robert De Niro, Billy Crystal, Lisa Kudrow, Joe Viterelli

Votes: 73,952 | Gross: $32.12M

Depression and Anxiety

9. The Beaver (2011)

PG-13 | 91 min | Drama

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
60 Metascore

A troubled husband and executive adopts a beaver hand-puppet as his sole means of communication.

Director: Jodie Foster | Stars: Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin, Cherry Jones

Votes: 42,933 | Gross: $0.97M

10. Bug (2006)

R | 102 min | Drama, Horror, Thriller

6.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
62 Metascore

An unhinged war veteran holes up with a lonely woman in a spooky Oklahoma motel room. The line between reality and delusion is blurred as they discover a bug infestation.

Director: William Friedkin | Stars: Ashley Judd, Michael Shannon, Harry Connick Jr., Lynn Collins

Votes: 29,583 | Gross: $7.01M

11. Lars and the Real Girl (2007)

PG-13 | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
70 Metascore

A delusional young man strikes up an unconventional relationship with a doll he finds on the Internet.

Director: Craig Gillespie | Stars: Ryan Gosling, Emily Mortimer, Paul Schneider, R.D. Reid

Votes: 123,793 | Gross: $5.97M

12. The Machinist (2004)

R | 101 min | Drama, Thriller

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
61 Metascore

An industrial worker who hasn't slept in a year begins to doubt his own sanity.

Director: Brad Anderson | Stars: Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Aitana Sánchez-Gijón, John Sharian

Votes: 307,576 | Gross: $1.08M

13. The Astronaut's Wife (1999)

R | 109 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

5.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
37 Metascore

After an explosion in space and subsequent two-minute radio-out period, two astronauts return home to their wives. Slightly it's revealed that they're not the same as they were.

Director: Rand Ravich | Stars: Charlize Theron, Johnny Depp, Joe Morton, Clea DuVall

Votes: 48,344 | Gross: $10.67M

14. Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1989)

NC-17 | 101 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

7.0
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55 Metascore

An unbalanced but alluring former mental patient takes a porn star prisoner in the hopes of convincing her to marry him.

Director: Pedro Almodóvar | Stars: Victoria Abril, Antonio Banderas, Loles León, Julieta Serrano

Votes: 19,871 | Gross: $4.09M

15. Benny & Joon (1993)

PG | 98 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.2
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57 Metascore

A mentally ill young woman finds her love in an eccentric man who models himself after Buster Keaton.

Director: Jeremiah S. Chechik | Stars: Johnny Depp, Mary Stuart Masterson, Aidan Quinn, Julianne Moore

Votes: 48,972 | Gross: $23.20M

16. Quills (2000)

R | 124 min | Biography, Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
70 Metascore

In a Napoleonic era insane asylum, an inmate, the irrepressible Marquis De Sade, fights a battle of wills against a tyrannically prudish doctor.

Director: Philip Kaufman | Stars: Geoffrey Rush, Kate Winslet, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Caine

Votes: 47,011 | Gross: $7.06M

17. Psycho (1960)

R | 109 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
97 Metascore

A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin

Votes: 475,790 | Gross: $32.00M

18. Psycho (1998)

R | 105 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

4.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  
47 Metascore

A young female embezzler arrives at the Bates Motel, which has terrible secrets of its own.

Director: Gus Van Sant | Stars: Vince Vaughn, Anne Heche, Julianne Moore, Viggo Mortensen

Votes: 40,233 | Gross: $21.46M

19. Sybil (1976)

198 min | Biography, Drama

8.0
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A young woman whose childhood was so harrowing to her that she developed sixteen different personalities is treated by a doctor.

Stars: Joanne Woodward, Sally Field, Brad Davis, Martine Bartlett

Votes: 5,586

Multiple Personality or Dissociative Personality Disorder

20. Sybil (2007 TV Movie)

89 min | Drama

7.0
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A true story of a young woman whose abusive childhood results in her developing a multiple personality disorder.

Director: Joseph Sargent | Stars: Jessica Lange, Tammy Blanchard, Ron White, JoBeth Williams

Votes: 1,170

Multiple Personality or Dissociative Personality Disorder

21. Identity (2003)

R | 90 min | Mystery, Thriller

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
64 Metascore

Stranded at a desolate Nevada motel during a nasty rain-storm, ten strangers become acquainted with each other when they realize that they're being killed off one by one.

Director: James Mangold | Stars: John Cusack, Ray Liotta, Amanda Peet, John Hawkes

Votes: 194,233 | Gross: $52.16M

Multiple Personality or Dissociative Personality Disorder

22. Seven Psychopaths (2012)

R | 110 min | Comedy, Crime

7.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
66 Metascore

A struggling screenwriter inadvertently becomes entangled in the Los Angeles criminal underworld after his oddball friends kidnap a gangster's beloved Shih Tzu.

Director: Martin McDonagh | Stars: Colin Farrell, Woody Harrelson, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken

Votes: 203,076 | Gross: $15.02M

23. Harvey (1950)

Not Rated | 104 min | Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

8.0
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Due to his insistence that he has an invisible six foot-tall rabbit for a best friend, a whimsical middle-aged man is thought by his family to be insane - but he may be wiser than anyone knows.

Director: Henry Koster | Stars: James Stewart, Wallace Ford, William H. Lynn, Victoria Horne

Votes: 47,317

24. Shutter Island (2010)

R | 138 min | Mystery, Thriller

8.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
63 Metascore

In 1954, a U.S. Marshal investigates the disappearance of a murderer, who escaped from a hospital for the criminally insane.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Emily Mortimer, Mark Ruffalo, Ben Kingsley

Votes: 896,767 | Gross: $128.01M

25. Amadeus (1984)

R | 160 min | Biography, Drama, History

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
93 Metascore

The incredible story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, told by his peer and secret rival Antonio Salieri - now confined to an insane asylum.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Elizabeth Berridge, Roy Dotrice

Votes: 302,690 | Gross: $51.97M

26. Numb (I) (2007)

R | 93 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

6.7
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A chronically depressed screenwriter desperately tries to cure his condition when he meets the girl of his dreams.

Director: Harris Goldberg | Stars: Matthew Perry, Lynn Collins, Kevin Pollak, Bob Gunton

Votes: 7,497

Depersonalization disorder