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If you live on planet Earth, you’ve most likely had some time to enjoy a favorite show or some movies (or quite a few :)) over the past year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But how many of these movies or episodes really provided us any substance or carried a deeper meaning or message? Ok, I know I sound like your English teacher, but just think about it. What value did these hours lost staring at screens provide us? I can admit, I watched several slapstick-humor type movies and had my fill of this-is-so-bad-it’s-funny media viewings. But I would like to give you some ideas of unique movies to watch related to mental health that deliver, in some way, a feel-good, or inspiring boost. Give some of these movies a try, and a few may surprise you! 

Unstuck: An OCD Kids Movie

View Trailer Here

Film can be found on Vimeo or Kanopy.

Heartwarming, tear-jerking, and honest, this portrayal of the experience of some kids with a challenging mental disorder will call for a full box of tissues. At 23 minutes, this award-winning short film won’t take long to watch, but the powerful impact and insight it delivers will stay with viewers. Discover the struggle, the healing, and hear their voices. 

Mental Health Message: You can face any obstacle.

Dumplin’

View Trailer Here

Film can be found on Netflix.

Somewhat campy and cheesy, yet well-executed, this movie starring Jennifer Aniston delivers a positive message about embracing your body as it is. Plus, you can read the book before you watch the movie.

When the plus size daughter of a former pageant queen idol decides to participate in the Miss Teen Bluebonnet-Texas Pageant along with her best friend, El, she never expects that other girls who don’t quite fit in will follow her and start a revolution by challenging pageant norms. But sometimes uprooting tradition doesn’t go over too well in a conservative southern town. 

Mental Health Message: The only size that matters is the size of your heart.

In Their Shoes: Unheard Stories of Reentry and Recovery

View Trailer Here

Coming to a film festival near you soon. More updates can be found here.

CONTENT WARNING: Drug use/violent themes/language that may not be suitable for younger audiences.

This incredible story of four felons in the city of Boston climbing their way out of drug abuse through poetry and writing will bring to light just how much of an issue the opioid and heroin epidemic is in America. Featuring incredible footage and interviews with prominent figures in the Boston area, this groundbreaking film proves it’s never too late for a second chance.

Mental Health Message: Sometimes all it takes is another shot to rewrite your story, and it’s never too late to change.

The Social Dilemma 

View Trailer Here

Film can be found on Netflix.

For anyone who’s ever wondered why they can never get off of their phone, or how social media sites know exactly what a person is interested in, The Social Dilemma is right up your alley. Take an inside glimpse into the technology behind social media and hear firsthand accounts of what’s really going on every time you open Instagram. Learn about how you can protect your identity online and maintain a healthy screen time. A shocking, yet much needed reveal concerning the inner workings of social media platforms, this docu-drama approaches the challenging question-how can we take back our privacy?

Mental Health Message: Taking care of yourself means staying smart online and protecting your privacy.

Becoming

View Trailer Here

Film can be found on Netflix.

When the book by Michelle Obama came out in 2018, it instantly topped bestseller charts and the term “memoir” was redefined. Now, her story is onscreen. Regardless of your politics, or even whether or not you have an opinion on the political scene in America does not matter- as Michelle says, “So little of who I am happened in those eight years. So much of who I am happened before that.”

The documentary focus is to explain Michelle Obama’s coming-of-age story of being a successful Black woman from humble roots, constantly torn down by people who did not want to see a woman of her background succeed.

Mental Health Message: For anyone who’s never really felt like they’ve fit in, or if you’ve ever been told you can’t do something because you look, act, or feel a certain way, watch Michelle break through barriers and learn that there is power in believing and becoming.

I hope that you guys can give a couple of these movies a try, and take away from them something that will make you feel uplifted and inspired to be your best and feel confident in yourself! Thanks for taking the time to check this out. Have a great week!

 


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