Mental illness in cinema: help or hindrance

Does cinema tend to simplify/sensationalise mental illness?

When I watch things I can relate to, I don’t feel so odd and isolated.

I find it hard to find things i relate to on a personal level.

Really? When I watched movies before I saw quite a few things the characters did that made me laugh, and wonder if they had been spying on me.
At the same time, it felt kind of reassuring that I wasn’t the only one doing odd things.

Ok- maybe when characters are paranoid .

I don’t enjoy ot when serial killlers or violent people are portrayed as mentally ill. It only makes the stigma more deeply imbedded in people’s psyches

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I can’t think of to many movies showing paranoia in a positive experience, which is a shame, because of all the paranoid people I’ve come across, they’ve never done me any harm.

I went to an Emilie Autumn concert with my partner who has schizophrenia, it was her Fight Like A Girl tour and there was one song were she goes into a “psychosis” state. People started to sing along at the start of the song but a quarter of the way in the audience went fully quiet as she acted out the state of “psychosis” while being “strapped” or “Held back” by her dancers.

My partner was starting to fall into psychosis the day before and after the performance two days later he was in full blown psychosis.

I like Emilie’s music, I think she has a way of writing her own music and lyrics. However I think she over dramatizes mental illness and her younger fans think it is “cool” to have a mental illness and pretend they do. I have seen the forums.

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I like to watch movies and shows about mental illness. I don’t take them as being 100% or even 50% accurate but I do think they can give some insight. I figure some insight is better then no insight.

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I actually watched a movie called The short life of Catherine Dunbar which was about anorexia. From people who suffer from anorexia they said it was a pretty close representation.

I also like to watch movies on mental illness. I think there are pro MI movies and anti MI movies. I like movies where there is a positive ending when it relates to mental illness. You know feel good type of movies.


My sis is bit of an Emilie Autumn fan until she went to a concert and then she just sort of shuddered and shook her head.

I tried to listen to her work. She is really proud of her illness. Good for her that she’s not letting stop her. But man, if I had to watch some one get strapped down that would be it for me too. First train out of lucid town.

If you like off kilter and violins and don’t want to have to watch a psychotic episode… Have you listened to Rasputina? They opened for Marilyn Manson a few years ago.

She really doesn’t get strapped down it’s an illusion of sleeves that look like a “straight jacket”. It is nice she to see she has embraced her mental illness. However her performances are way over the top, may I say Panto in style. I seen her twice, her Opheliac tour and Fight Like A Girl.

There is a music video out she did her for song Fight Like A Girl which is set in an “Asylum”. I think someone was watching Sucker Punch for inspiration.