19 October 2020

Call for submissions: authentic portrayal of mental health in movies and series

MHE’s Youth Task Force is launching a call for submissions to young people about good examples of movies or series where mental health is portrayed in an authentic way. Which movies or series taught you something about mental health? Can you think of any that helped you with your own mental health?


Movies and series are a popular way of entertainment. They also play an important role in shaping public opinion about societal issues. When it comes to the portrayal of mental health, storytellers walk a fine line between cinematic entertainment and truthful depictions of a person’s lived experience.


While opinions about movies and series are subjective, MHE would like to highlight a few criteria for authentic depictions of mental health.


A good example should include the perspective of a person with lived experience. Instead of perpetuating existing stigmatising prejudices it should steer away from reinforcing common misconceptions. Moreover, it should offer insights into a persons’s individual experience of mental health problems. Rather than reducing a character to their psychosocial disability, a movie or series should emphasise their condition is only a part of their multi-faceted character. Additionally, sensitive topics such as suicide should be portrayed in a careful manner and avoid dramatisation to reduce the risk of additional suicides.


Which movies or series about mental health recently caught your eye? Let us know your suggestions in the comments section of the post on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter or submit them to Jennifer Oroilidis, Junior Communications Officer at Mental Health Europe via jennifer.oroilidis@mentalhealtheurope.org.


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