Nov 4, 2006

a great movie!

Last night, Skywalker checked a movie out of the library and we watched it. It's called the Snake Pit. It's about a woman who is experiencing a nervous breakdown and is put in an institution, and how she comes to herself. It's very descriptive of the experience of being institutionalized, and institutions back then (the 1940's).

Olivia De Havilland stars in it. She's most famous for her role as Melanie in Gone With The Wind. I adore her, and I think that she and Ingrid Bergman are the two most beautiful women ever to grace the silver screen.

SO interesting to me, because I worked in a residential treatment facility. All of the issues surrounding human services in the mental health field-- how much is too much, what's helping and what's not, when to let someone go on their own and complete their recovery, what sort of boundaries ought to exist between staff and patients and what is just plain meanness as far as boundaries are concerned.

It reminds me of two other, more contemporary stories: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's nest (which I haven't watched, but I have read the book), and Girl, Interrupted (ditto.)

One Flew is more pointed in its denunciation of the inhumanity of mental health practices and the dehumanizing of mental-health patients.

Girl, Interrupted is just a sort of "this is what happened, this is who I am, here are some of the notes straight from the charting the staff did while I was in the facility" thing. No real preachy-ness, just a biographical recounting of the year she spent in an institution. BTW, this movie has another of my most favorite hollywood personalities-- Angelina Jolie.

SOOOO interesting. I highly reccommend all of these. (If you watch R rated movies. Which I don't. But read the books, if you don't watch the movies.)

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