Do you have a handful of go-to movies that you rewatch time and again, especially when you are feeling blue? Check out our list of movies to watch when depressed, and see whether you can find any common favorite.
When you’re down in the dumps it’s easy to simply lose hope and just give in to your despair. In such a dark phase, it seems counter-intuitive to consciously take initiative with the purpose of improving our state of mind. But that is exactly what we need the most.
Even a small positive change can make us feel much better. How about changing your whole perspective on your current life while being entertained at the same time? Yes, I’m talking about some great movies to watch when you feel depressed.
When our thoughts are clouded by our emotions it is essential to find a distraction; anything that can keep our mind off the things that are making us feel sad. So, how about sitting down with your favorite munchies and watching these movies when you’re feeling depressed?
25 Movies To Watch When Depressed:
Here’s is our pick of some of the best movies to watch when you’re depressed. While these flicks are in no way an alternative to therapy or treatment for clinical depression, they surely can help you to feel much better.
25. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
After a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.
24. Thelma & Louise (1991)
Louise is working in a diner as a waitress and has some problems with her boyfriend Jimmy, who, as a musician, is always on the road. Thelma is married to Darryl who likes his wife to stay quiet in the kitchen so that he can watch football on TV. One day Thelma and Louise decide to break out of their normal life and jump in the car and hit the road. Their journey, however, turns into a flight when Louise kills a man who threatens to rape Thelma. They decide to go to Mexico, but soon they are hunted by American police.
23. Almost Famous (2000)
The early 1970s. William Miller is 15-years old and an aspiring rock journalist. He gets a job writing for Rolling Stone magazine. His first assignment: tour with the band Stillwater and write about the experience. Miller will get to see what goes on behind the scenes in a famous band, including the moments when things fall apart. Moreover, for him, it will be a period of new experiences and finding himself.
22. As Good as It Gets (1997)
Melvin Udall is an obsessive-compulsive writer of romantic fiction who’s rude to everyone he meets, including his gay neighbor Simon, but when he has to look after Simon’s dog, he begins to soften and, if still not completely over his problems, finds he can conduct a relationship with the only waitress at the local diner who’ll serve him.
21. Life is Beautiful (1997)
In 1930s Italy, a carefree Jewish bookkeeper named Guido starts a fairy tale life by courting and marrying a lovely woman from a nearby city. Guido and his wife have a son and live happily together until the occupation of Italy by German forces. In an attempt to hold his family together and help his son survive the horrors of a Jewish Concentration Camp, Guido imagines that the Holocaust is a game and that the grand prize for winning is a tank.
20. Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
Central events take place in the sixties of the last century in the UK. In this kingdom, on a small island in New England, there are two underage people who are in love with each other. And now, one day, these two lover doves run away from the care of adults. They see the full moon and it excites them.
19. Inside Out (2015)
When a young girl named Riley is uprooted from her Midwestern lifestyle and moved to the busy and chaotic San Francisco, her emotions; Anger, Sadness, Disgust, Fear, and (her most important emotion) Joy, start to disagree on how to deal with this dramatic change. This causes problems up in Headquarters, the central living and working place for the five emotions. But, an accident involving Riley’s happy memories changes her entire outlook. Joy and Sadness need to find Riley’s memories and return them to Headquarters before it’s too late.
18. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)
McMurphy has a criminal past and has once again gotten himself into trouble and is sentenced by the court. To escape labor duties in prison, McMurphy pleads insanity and is sent to the ward for the mentally unstable. Once here, McMurphy both endures and stands witness to the abuse and degradation of the oppressive Nurse Ratched, who gains superiority and power through the flaws of the other inmates. McMurphy and the other inmates band together to make a rebellious stance against the atrocious Nurse.
17. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)
Based on the novel written by Stephen Chbosky, this is about 15-year-old Charlie (Logan Lerman), an endearing and naive outsider, coping with first love (Emma Watson), the suicide of his best friend, and his own mental illness while struggling to find a group of people with whom he belongs. The introverted freshman is taken under the wings of two seniors, Sam and Patrick, who welcome him to the real world.
16. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
High school student Ferris Bueller wants a day off from school and he’s developed an incredibly sophisticated plan to pull it off. He talks his friend Cameron into taking his father’s prized Ferrari and with his girlfriend Sloane head into Chicago for the day. While they are taking in what the city has to offer, school principal Ed Rooney is convinced that Ferris is, not for the first time, playing hooky for the day and is hell-bent to catch him out. Ferris has anticipated that, much to Rooney’s chagrin.
15. Rushmore (1998)
Max Fischer is a more than determined student at his prep school, Rushmore Academy where he oversees anything with the word “extra-curricular”. He befriends a preschool teacher named Ms. Cross, whom he ends up falling in love with. Things take a turn for the worse when his mentor, Herman Blume, an unhappy millionaire falls for her as well. As a result, their personal and professional lives spiral out of control.
14. Chungking Express (1994)
Wong Kar-Wai’s movie about two love-struck cops is filmed in impressionistic splashes of motion and color. The first half deals with Cop 223, who has broken up with his girlfriend of five years. He purchases a tin of pineapples with an expiration date of May 1 each day for a month. By the end of that time, he feels that he will either be rejoined with his love or that it too will have expired forever. The second half shows Cop 663 dealing with his breakup with his flight attendant girlfriend. He talks with his apartment furnishings until he meets a new girl at a local lunch counter.
13. Amélie (2001)
Amélie is a shy waitress in a Montmartre café. After returning a long-lost childhood treasure to a former occupant of her apartment, and seeing the effect it has on him, she decides to set out on a mission to make others happy and in the meantime pursues a quirky guy who collects discarded photo booth pictures.
12. The Meyerowitz Stories (2017)
We will follow the story of an unfit family, understanding how three siblings deal with the exaggerated figure of their father. Alternating comedy and drama, the film shows the degree of normalcy in some difficult instances of life, such as death, illness, and abandonment, never attenuating the concepts worked. A great film, also featuring a masterful performance of the legendary Dustin Hoffman.
11. Erin Brockovich (2000)
Erin Brockovich-Ellis is a woman in a tight spot following a car accident in which Erin was not at fault. Erin pleads with her attorney Ed Masry to hire her at his law firm. Erin stumbles upon some medical records placed in real estate files. She convinces Ed to allow her to investigate, where she discovers a cover-up involving contaminated water in a local community that is causing devastating illnesses among its residents.
10. Good Will Hunting (1997)
A young adult by the name of Will Hunting has always been living in the slums. He spends his nights at bars and batting cages with his best friends. However, he has an amazing talent in Mathematics. When Will is almost sent to jail, a professor at MIT decides to bail him out under the condition that he works with him on maths every week and that he visits a therapist. Little does he know that the therapist, Sean, will change his life in so many ways.
9. The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
The eccentric members of a dysfunctional family reluctantly gather under the same roof for various reasons. Three grown prodigies, all with a unique genius of some kind, and their mother are staying at the family household. Their father, Royal had left them long ago and comes back to make things right with his family.
8. City of Angels (1998)
Seth is an angel who accompanies the spirits of the recently dead to the ever after. Seth has never been human and so has never experienced touch or taste. In a hospital, however, he comes across Dr. Maggie Rice, a brilliant young heart surgeon who is devoted to her profession and her patients. Seth has the power to let himself be seen but Maggie finds him far too mysterious. He also meets a patient, Nathaniel Messinger, who has news for him – he too was once an angel like Seth but chose to fall to Earth and become human. Seth makes a decision on his future, which does not turn out as he had expected.
9. Play It Again, Sam (1972)
A mild-mannered film critic is dumped by his wife and his ego is crushed. His hero persona is the tough guy played by Humphrey Bogart in many of his movies and the apparition of Bogart begins showing up to give him advice. With the encouragement of his two married friends, he actually tries dating again, with less than satisfactory results, until he relaxes.
8. Big Hero 6 (2014)
When a devastating event befalls the city of San Fransokyo and catapults Hiro into the midst of danger, he turns to Baymax and his close friends into adrenaline junkie Go Go Tomago, neatnik Wasabi, chemistry whiz Honey Lemon, and fanboy Fred. Determined to uncover the mystery, Hiro transforms his friends into a band of high-tech heroes called “Big Hero 6.”
7. Spirited Away (2001)
Tale of the fanciful adventures of a ten-year-old girl named Chihiro, who discovers a secret world when she and her family get lost and venture through a hillside tunnel. When her parents undergo a mysterious transformation, Chihiro must fend for herself as she encounters strange spirits, assorted creatures, and a grumpy sorceress who seeks to prevent her from returning to the human world.
6. Yes Man (2008)
Carl Allen is at a standstill. No future… Until the day he enrolls into a personal development program based on a very simple idea: say yes to everything! Carl discovers with amazement the magical power of “Yes”, as he sees his professional and romantic life transform overnight with an unexpected promotion and a new girlfriend. But he’ll soon discover that better can be good’s enemy and that all opportunities shouldn’t be taken.
5. The King of Comedy (1982)
Rupert Pupkin is obsessed with becoming a comedy legend. However, when he confronts his idol talk show host Jerry Langford, with a plea to perform on his show, he is only given the run-around. He does not give up, however, but persists in stalking Jerry until he gets what he wants. Eventually, he must team up with his psychotic Langford-obsessed friend Masha to kidnap the talk show host in hopes of finally getting to perform his stand-up routine.
4. Rain Man (1988)
When car dealer Charlie Babbitt learns that his estranged father has died, he returns home to Cincinnati, where he discovers that he has an autistic older brother named Raymond and that his father’s $3 million fortune is being left to the mental institution in which Raymond lives. Motivated by his father’s money, Charlie checks Raymond out of the facility in order to return with him to Los Angeles. The brothers’ cross-country trip ends up changing both their lives.
3. The Descendants (2011)
Attorney Matt King is having a difficult time coping with his life at the moment. His wife Elizabeth is in a coma in the hospital following a boating accident. His youngest daughter Scottie is acting out in many ways. Matt is forced to be a parent for the first time in a long time. He is also in control of a family trust, one that is set to expire in a few years’ time. The trust owns a huge tract of land – vigorously sought by developers – the sale of which would be of great help financially to many of his cousins.
One day, he fetches his eldest daughter Alexandra from school and in a heated argument learns that Elizabeth was having an affair and was going to divorce him. Matt sets out to see the man but isn’t quite sure what he will say or do when he locates him.
2. The Breakfast Club (1985)
They were five students with nothing in common, faced with spending a Saturday detention together in their high school library. At 7 a.m., they had nothing to say, but by 4 p.m., they had bared their souls to each other and became good friends. To the outside world, they were simply a Brain, an Athlete, a Basket Case, a Princess, and a Criminal, but to each other, they would always be the Breakfast Club.
1. It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010)
Craig is a high-school junior, in the gifted program, infatuated with his best friend’s girl. When he realizes he’s suicidal, he checks himself into the psychiatric ward of a hospital, thinking they’ll do an observation, help him, and send him home in time for school the next day.
Once in, however, he must stay for a week; the juvenile ward is being renovated, so he’s in with adults as well as a few youths. Bobby, a man with a young daughter, shows him around; Craig notices Noelle, about his age. He tries to keep his friends from finding out where he is. Little things: he draws, goes to therapy, sings, helps Bobby rehearse an interview. Is this the stuff of insight?
8 Popular Movies that Stigmatize Mental Illness
If you are interested to know about movies that didn’t portray mental illness right, here’re our recommendations of films that stigmatize mental illness or have got mental illness wrong:
- Shutter Island (2010)
- Psycho (1960)
- Me, Myself and Irene (2000)
- Fight Club (1999)
- The Visit (2015)
- Split (2016)
- Total Recall (1990)
- The Joker (2019)
- Friday the 13th (1980) and
- A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)
- Turner and Hooch (1989)
A Little Self-Care Can Make All The Difference
So, now as you know what movie to watch when you are depressed, you get the idea that a small change in perspective can help you see the silver lining in the storm that’s clouding your thoughts. As humans, it is inevitable to go through tough times in life. But that doesn’t mean we should give up easily. In fact, we can deal with depression and move past our gloomy phase when we take care of ourselves better and that’s exactly where these movies come into play.
So are you satisfied with our hand-picked list of “Feel Good Movies To Watch When You Are Depressed”? Don’t forget to mention some of your favorite movies to watch when depressed, in the comments below. We hope you bounce back from your depression to become a happier and healthier person. Here’s a little something for you. Hope you have a lovely day or night, whenever you are reading this.