Of late it seen that Bollywood is coming to age and is portraying issues that affect the real life such as various kinds of social stigma, mental illnesses etc. Even though the portrayal of mental health issues is far from accurate but is definitely a step in the right direction. Here are some Bollywood movies which portray mental illness.
My Name Is Khan
In this Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol movie on the aftermath of 9/11, SRK was portrayed as a man with Asperger’s syndrome. This is probably the first time this mental health condition, which is still barely understood by most, was spoken about on national television.
Karthik Calling Karthik
This is a psychological thriller depicting the lead character, played by Farhan Akhtar, as a man who suffers from dissociative identity disorder, which is mistakenly simplified as shizophrenia. He has an alter ego that motivates, and later, threatens him over phone which turns out to be Karthik himself who records voice messages to himself at night.
Taare Zameen Par
This is probably one of the most acclaimed movie on mental health which reached out to a huge audience, raising immense awareness on dyslexia. Child actor, Darsheel Safary’s brilliant portrayal of a misunderstood dyslexic kid who’s sent to a boarding school as a punishment for being terrible in studies touched the hearts of many.
15 Park Avenue
This award winning film directed by Aparna Sen casts the lead character konkona Sen Sharma as a schizophrenic girl who is in search of an imaginary family.
This Amir Khan starring movie was not only a huge hit, it was also one of the first times that Bollywood talked about anterograde amnesia. Although it was a remake of a South Indian movie, it reached out to a large group of audience from all over the country. This movie is even more significant as one of the actors in the movie, Jia Khan, later committed suicide, throwing a lihght on the abysmal mental health scenario.
Hollywood star Priyanka Chopra is well known for belting out movies which are progressive and beautiful and Barfi! is one such movie. She portrays the role of an autistic woman with such elan that there were barely any dry eyes in the theatre. Autism is a disease which affects quite a large number of children and this movie did raise quite a bit of awareness.
Built as a comedy, this film revolves around a character, portrayed by Vidya Balan, who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. She identifies herself with the courtesan which triggers an episode. Even though the course of the treatment is s unscientific as it gets, it definitely made people aware of the condition.
You Me Aur Hum
Starring real life couple, Kajol and Ajay Devgan, this film talks about Alzheimer’s disease and its early onset. It talks about the protagonist’s struggle with the disease along with her pregnancy. Even though this debilitating condition can be reduced with medicines like Nootrophil, there is no treatment yet. This Bollywood movie, inspired by The Notebook holds up this tragic life in a heart wrenching love story.
Image source: – Pharmacer.com
Even though these movies did not really do a great job at portrayal, they managed to raise popular awareness.