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Teenage Depression in Film Today: Examining Girl Interrupted and the Virgin Suicides - Research Paper Example

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This paper looks at teen depression from the lenses of the films Girl Interrupted and The Virgin Suicides to paint a holistic picture of the problem and recommend some of the steps that can be taken to avert extreme consequences of depression among teens…
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Teenage Depression in Film Today: Examining Girl Interrupted and the Virgin Suicides
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Download file to see previous pages There are societal misconceptions about teen depression just as the world always fails to understand the teenagers themselves. With their wild lives, society sometimes overlooks the pressure on these young ones as they seek to balance popularity among peers, school life and influence to grow into adults. It, therefore, assumed that sporadic change of moods is a normal occurrence but depression is a much deeper problem that has the potential of shattering the whole essence of personality in a teenager leaving behind extreme despair and anger (Empfield, Maureen, and Nick Bakalar, 41). The films Girl Interrupted and The Virgin Suicides, therefore, help understand the problems of teen depression and the extent to which this has an effect on teenagers, their families, and society as a whole.

This 1999 film was made from Susanna Kaysen’s 1993 memoir Girl Interrupted and narrates the writer’s 18-month stay at a mental facility. It was directed by James Mangold with a cast that includes multiple academy award winners Angelina Jolie, Whoopi Goldberg, and others. From the start of the film when Susanna Kaysen played by Winona Ryder checks herself into a hospital after an aspirin overdose but denies that suicide was not her objective, instead, she is “trying to make shit stop”, one of the opening signs of mental problems from a possible depression. 

From the beginning of the film, symptoms of teen depression emerge as she befriends other patients like Polly "Torch" Clark, Georgina Tuskin and Daisy Randone. She is particularly captivated by Lisa Rowe played by Angelina Jolie who is a certified sociopath and manipulator of those around him. Suicide from depression emerges for the first time in the film when Lisa comes back to find her best friend’s place taken up by Susanna and demands to know where she is only to be informed that she committed suicide. The two then forge a friendship and begin to be accomplices in causing trouble around the institution. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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