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10 Movies That Flush Taboos Around Mental Health And Disabilities

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Here’s a selection of movies that educate people about how devastating mental illnesses, disorders and intellectual disabilities can be if they’re ignored. There are still a lot of embarrassing, shameful and funny incidents that happen to real mental health victims, which are also showcased in these movies.

Those unaffected believe such issues are nothing but full of drama and attention-grabbing elements created for self-profit in a particular situation.

In simple terms, if you’re surrounded by educated people who understand science, your problems will be visible. However, if you’re surrounded by uneducated people, no one will notice you, and they will most likely take you to religious preachers for treatment, which is completely different from the scientific perspective.

1. Bhool Bhulaiya (Based On Dissociative Identity Disorder)

vidya balan in bhool bhulaiya
Vidya Balan in Bhool Bhulaiyaa.

Bhool Bhulaiyaa starring Akshay Kumar, Vidya Balan, Anisha Patel and Paresh Rawal, became a popular movie on mental disorders and did a wonderful job that made many directors of different languages adapt the plot to depict how dangerous or scared a character may become as a result.

The tale revolved around an ancient royal palace cursed by a woman and later affected the newly formed prince’s wife. However, following the arrival of a hilarious Psychiatrist in the palace, it became clear how a mind problem may be so dangerous or violent through a simple-seeming girl.

However, the movie became so confusing to the educated people for taking a stand and to show their own feedback on how to elaborate the story, whether it is fictional or based on science. The illiterate people were entertained by the thrill, suspense and horror parts of the movie.

2. Dear Zindagi (Based On Anxiety, Bipolar And Sleeping Disorders)


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Dear Zindagi starred Sharukh Khan and Alia Bhatt, demonstrating the real cause of anxiety, Sleeping disorders and other mental health disorders. Bhatt helps others recognise how specific social and childhood factors can influence future critical problems and disorders and how these symptoms can develop into a severe disorder if not identified and treated immediately.

Unlike other movies on mental health, this film, in which Bhatt seeks treatment and expresses all of her mental concerns, leads to rehabilitation and identity creation, inspiring many others living with untreated mental illnesses.

3. Taare Zameen Par (Based On Dyslexia)

Tare Zameen Par Poster
Taare Zameen Par.

A boy between the ages of 3 and 8, who was the younger son of a strict Indian father who aspired to make his two children the best in society, couldn’t tell the difference between D and B in English. Ishaan Awasthi, the main character in Taare Zameen Par, has a mind that works like a slate, printing everything he writes larger than chalk, even after wiping, something foggy remains.

Ishan has dyslexia; using mental science terminology (a learning disorder) made this movie most noticeable. Dyslexia affects not only reading and writing but also speaking, hearing and the ability to distinguish between words and patterns.

However, the film demonstrated how critical it is to understand the main reason early on before it is too late. The competition causes all parents to be so severe with their own children that they cannot realise that dyslexia can have a significant impact on their own children’s lives.

4. Koi… Mil Gya (Based On Neurodevelopmental Disorder)

koi mil gya
Koi Mil Gaya.

A science fiction film played by Hritik Roshan, Koi Mil Gaya released in 2003 and is based on the story of an alien’s impact on the life of an intellectually disabled individual. This widely praised Rakesh Roshan film explores how society treats intellectually disabled youngsters and how they are frequently mocked.

However, the fictitious part highlighted how a miracle happened with the boy who was consistently overcoming all obstacles in his path, with only his mother providing love and positivity before.

The positive aspect of the film was that anything might happen to anyone at any time, and we all need to understand, support and love everyone in our society.

5. Anjaana Anjaani (Based On Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder)

Anjaana Anjaani
Anjaana Anjaani.

The story of two people is told in this film, Kiara, who is living with adjustment disorder, and Akash, who is living with post-traumatic stress disorder. Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra play them in the film and play a pivotal role.

Both are severely depressed, but meeting an understanding partner in their solitary lives changed their minds. Yes, the entire film stressed the true reason for our problem and the importance of finding an understanding person who can provide life-saving assistance through love, friendship and caring emotions.

6. Barfi (Based On Autism Spectrum Disorder)


Barfi is a 2012 Hindi comedy picture, but thanks to Priyanka Chopra, Ranbir Kapoor and Ileana D’Cruz, it has a psychological impact on viewers. It focuses on widespread mental health issues, including Autism Spectrum Disorder. According to several research and publications, biological defects cause autism, as demonstrated by Priyanka Chopra in the film.

This film has a good impact in that the neurodevelopmental disorder is shown pleasantly rather than as a dark and difficult phase. The film attempted to reduce the social shame associated with it.

7. Tamasha (Based On Borderline Personality Disorder)


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Tamasha, a Hindi romantic-comedy-drama movie featuring Deepika Padukone and cool boy Ranbir Kapoor, highlighted some major issues caused by Borderline Personality Disorder.

As demonstrated in the movie or part portrayed by Ranbir and Deepika, a person living with it can experience a variety of moods, behaviours, ideas and self-images. As illustrated in the film, anyone can have relationship issues, as Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone have experienced mood swings and their self-image has been distorted.

8. Karthik Calling Karthik (Based On Schizophrenia)

Karthik Calling Karthik
Karthik Calling Karthik.

Karthik Calling Karthik is a thriller film that focuses on the life of a person living with a mental disorder. Through this fictional story, the film demonstrated how a bright and decent young person could be frustrated in such a situation without being aware of all other key symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations.

Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that presents itself in a number of ways, including delusions, false beliefs and hallucinations involving things that do not exist, all of which are depicted in great detail in the film.

The good influence of the film, starring Farhan Akhtar and Deepika Padukone, was that it showed how the disorder might cause major problems for a normal person and taught the audience how to overcome and deal with such problems in real life.

9. Heroine (Based On Bipolar Disorder)

Kareena Kapoor in Heroine
Kareena Kapoor in Heroine.

While Heroine does not exclusively focus on Bipolar Disorder, it does highlight how the disorder contributes to Kareena’s career decline.

Bipolar affective disorder, commonly known as manic-depressive disorder, is a mood condition in which a person lives with extreme mood fluctuations from mania to depression.

Millions of people are still aware of how they are failing in their career or personal lives and the film exhibits all of the symptoms to its relevant victims today.

10. Chhichhore (Based On Anxiety, Stress And Suicide)


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Sushant Singh Rajput starred in Chhichhore, which came highly recommended for a reason: the film dealt with exam anxiety, pressure and suicide. The film’s plot depicted its lessons and explained what it’s like to be under a lot of stress (something that is very common in our society and is perpetuated by a cut-throat education system).

The film finished positively, discouraging individuals from taking extreme steps as an escape method in the face of so many positive life influences.


Movies and other educational events will not be impacted until society is forced to face some illiterate truths passed down from generation to generation. Mental health concerns are essential around the globe. Many celebrities followed by billions of people always urge people to understand the real issues if someone in their close surroundings is living with mental illnesses or disabilities.

We must all learn to recognise and assess whether symptoms allow us to provide emotional support or hospitalise someone we care about.

The article was first published on detainedengineers.

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        An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

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        Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

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        MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

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        A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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        As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

        Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

        Find out more about her campaign here.

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        A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

        A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

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        A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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