For first years, you’re ready to breathe after a slew of examinations. For second years, you have Step 1 on your mind but aren’t fully committed to studying—unless you’re a gunner. For third years, you’re exhausted from the wards and it’s time for a break. For fourth years, you’re interviewing around the country and you can’t wait to sleep in your own bed for a change.
So, take this rare opportunity to relax, and what better way than watching a movie with a medical theme? Here are a few suggestions for a cozy night in.
“Gross Anatomy” is an ideal movie for people who are applying to medical school or who are in medical school. It focuses on a group of first-year medical students who deal with issues that are all too familiar to us: learning large volumes of material in short amounts of time, struggling with money, and juggling family while getting good grades. The students’ toughest class is the most dreaded and talked about one: gross anatomy. The professor puts them into groups and the students have to learn how to work with each other despite their very different personalities. The rigors of medical school, however, cause new friendships to form. This is a great movie to watch with family and friends so that they have see what medical school is like.
Richard Gere gives a name to bipolar disorder in “Mr. Jones.” He plays the charismatic Mr. Jones who goes through psychiatric treatment for his illness. His character accurately fulfills the DIG FAST mnemonic of someone going through a manic episode.
He spends a lot of money, has promiscuous sex, acts like a daredevil, and has more ideas in his head than he can keep up with. The movie also shows when the doctor-patient relationship goes too far. This entertaining and educational movie gives a realistic portrayal of bipolar disorder that you will never forget.
“The King’s Speech”
“The King’s Speech” is an historical film about King George VI, who suffers from a speech disorder. This becomes problematic when he must deliver speeches in public or on the radio after his brother abdicates from the throne. Colin Firth plays the king and turns to the speech therapist Lionel Logue who has no formal education on speech disorders. Logue’s exercises appear unconventional but are useful, such as singing and modifying breathing patterns. The two form a bond over the course of the movie and tackle the king’s stuttering together.
“A Beautiful Mind”
“A Beautiful Mind” is based on the true story of John Nash, a mathematician with schizophrenia. The mental illness makes work, family and home life difficult. His hallucinations overtake him to the point that he does not live in reality. Russell Crowe intensely portrays the hardships of someone with a mental illness. The movie also shows that people with psychiatric conditions can lead successful lives if they keep their illness under control.
“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”
Jack Nicholson stars in the classic film “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” based on the 1962 novel. Nicholson’s character McMurphy is sentenced to prison but fakes a mental illness believing that a psychiatric hospital is better than jail. Well, he was wrong. The ward is run by the formidable Nurse Ratched, who is one of the most notorious characters in movie history. Basically, she makes everyone’s life a living hell. McMurphy stands up to Ratched, leading to dire consequences. . Thankfully, psychiatric wards are not run like this anymore.
“M.A.S.H.” is a satirical film about doctors working for the mobile army surgical hospital during the Korean War. Hawkeye is the ringleader of the antics and he wreaks havoc on everyone who can’t stand him. Despite all the trouble he and his fellow surgeons have caused, they make it through the war with their sanity and humor intact. The movie’s popularity led to the long-running TV series starring many of the same actors.
“The Fugitive” is an action-thriller about a prominent Chicago vascular surgeon who’s accused of murdering his wife. Harrison Ford, who plays Dr. Richard Kimble, escapes from the police en route to the prison. His journey throughout the movie shows him evading the police while looking for his wife’s killer and trying to prove his innocence. As Kimble tries to find the truth, he uncovers deeper motives at play. . This movie is a portrayal of the fight for justice and integrity.
Whether you enjoy one of these movies or another, spend this winter with those who are most important to you. Don’t forget the hot chocolate and popcorn!
A Taste Of Your Own Medicine is a column that gives you a taste of medicine. It focuses on important and interesting topics relating to medicine and being a medical student.