A Star Is Born

Film: A Star Is Born
Directed by: Bradley Cooper
Year: 2018
Running time: 136 minutes

Plot: Cinematography has often dealt with the theme of suicidality in many different ways, and also some recent movies talk about this topic using a modern language and approach. An example is the notorious “A Star Is born”, a movie focused on a beautiful love story set in the music business world. In this movie the main character is a successful rock star named Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper), who accidentally meets a young unknown singer named Ally (Lady Gaga), while she’s exhibiting in a night club. He isimmediately very impressed by this girl: and invites her to his concert the day after, where she sings a song with him overcoming her early shyness. Since that moment, Ally begins a new career as singer, supported by Jackson, and the two fall in love. In a short time, Ally reaches success in music business world, but important private relational problems start to emerge. Jackson has a long-standing alcohol abuse problem, which has heavy consequences on their relationship. Moreover, Ally starts a collaboration with a music manager that changes radically her initial music style, making Jackson feel confused and useless in some way. Jackson decides to go to rehab, and when he comes back home he wants to start again, but the sense of uselessness and frustration are unbearable so he decide to commit suicide. Ally appears devastated by this tragedy, showing the incredible burden of surviving a suicide.


Movie of the Month (September 2019)

In September 2019 we chose a movie for you:

Collateral Beauty

Film: Collateral Beauty
Directed by: David Frankel
Year: 2016
Running time: 97 minutes 

Plot:  American drama released in 2016, about a man who copes with his daughter’s death for cancer. Howard Inlet (Will Smith), after his daughter’s death, alone, rarely sleeping or eating; he is no longer able to work or to enjoy spending time with friends, and he also leaves his wife. His friends and business partners are really worried about Howard’s mental health as well as their company’s future. They organize the meeting between Howard and the three recipients of the letters he writes after his daughter’s death, Love, Death and Time, personified by three actors.   

We propose this movie because it describes the difficult condition of a man that loses his daughter: he seems to lose every reason for living, but the strange idea of his friends and wife will save him from self-destruction, recognising that his life will never be the same as before, but maybe he can still be able to find the “collateral beauty” in his life. 

“Love. Time. Death. Now these three abstractions connect every single human being on Earth. Everything that we covet, everything that we fear not having, everything that we ultimately end up buying is because at the end of the day we long for love, we wish we had more time, and we fear death”. 

“Just be sure to notice the collateral beauty” 




Movie of the Month (May2019)

In May 2019 we chose a movie for you:

Little Miss Sunshine

Directed by: Jonathan Dayton
Starring: Greg Kinnear, Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Paul Dano, Abigail Breslin, Alan Arkin
Year: 2006
Running time: 101 minutes

Plot: The story is about the trip of the Hoover family to take their 8-year old daughter Olive to the “Little Miss Sunshine” beauty pageant. Olive’s uncle Frank, a scholar of Proust, is temporarily living at home with the family after having attempted suicide. During the road trip, the family suffers numerous personal setbacks and discovers their need for each other’s support. The movie deals with very sensitive issues (homosexuality, fat and skinny shaming, suicide) seen through Olive’s eyes: travelling and overcoming difficulties together, the family becomes more united and resilient.  

“Life is one fu***ng beauty contest after another. School, then college, then work […]
If I want to fly, I’ll find a way to fly.
You do what you love, and f**k the rest.”

Source (text and image): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Miss_Sunshine#/media/File:Little_miss_sunshine_poster.jpg

Movie of the Month (March 2019)

In March 2019 we chose a movie for you:

Face to Face

Directed by: Ingmar Bergman
Year: 1976
Running time: 114-177 minutes

Plot: This movie by Bergman is about a psychiatrist, who is suffering from a mental illness. Dr. Jenny Isaksson is a psychiatrist, married to Erik, who is a psychiatrist as well. Jenny is haunted by images and emotions from her past, which interfere with her everyday life and duties; she goes through a mental breakdown and tries to commit suicide.

“We are not afraid of the horrors we know. They are the ones we don’t know who frighten us”.

Movie of the Month (February 2019)

In February 2019 we chose a movie for you:

My Sister’s Keeper

Directed by: Nick Cassavetes
Starring: Cameron Diaz, Abigail Breslin, Alec Baldwin, Sofia Vassilieva
Year: 2009
Running time: 109 minutes

Plot: It is an American drama film Based on Jodi Picoult’s 2004 novel. The story is about Kate, who had acute promyelocytic leukemia, and her younger sister Anna, conceived by in vitro fertilization, genetically matched to her sister to donate compatible organs, blood, and tissue to help her. When Anna grows up, she tells her parents that she does not want to be a donor anymore, trying to obtain through a process the medical emancipation, even if she knows that her sister will finally die because of her decision. She starts a fight against her mom Sara, who wants to keep Kate alive.  When Kate attempts suicide by a painkillers overdose, Anna stops her. The movie well explains Kate’s desire not to live any longer, asking her sister to refuse to donate her blood and organs, and to let her die.

A previous movie suggestion has been “The Sea Inside” (LINK), in line with the current debate concerning euthanasia and assisted suicide: “The topic is the object of current debates involving the whole clinical community, and it has also been the focus of two intersection symposia organized by the EPA-SSSP together with the Old Age Psychiatry Section in 2017 in Florence, and in 2018 in Nice” (LINK).

“There are some things we do because we convince ourselves it would be better for everyone involved. We tell ourselves that it’s the right thing to do, the altruistic thing to do. It’s far easier than telling ourselves the truth.” 
Jodi Picoult, My Sister’s Keeper


Movie of the Month (December 2018)

In December 2018 we chose a movie for you:

It’s a Wonderful Life

Directed by: Frank Capra
Starring: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore
Year: 1946
Running time: 131 minutes

The film is considered one of the most loved films in American cinema, and has become traditional viewing during the Christmas season.  

Plotit’s an American Christmas fantasy comedy-drama film, based on the short story and booklet The Greatest Gift (Philip Van Doren Stern, 1939). The story is about George Bailey who is thinking about suicide on Christmas Eve (1945); in Heaven, Clarence, is assigned to become George’s guardian angel. Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched, and how different life in his community of Bedford Falls would be if he had never been born, offering him the greatest Christmas gift.

The story reminds us about Mozart’s Papageno. In Singspiel, Papageno tries to attempt suicide, but he is saved by the three child-spirits: they remind him the magic power of the bells he was gifted at the start of the story (Click HERE to know more about Papageno). In suicide prevention the Papageno effect is the positive role that media can play in order to prevent suicide, in contrast with the Werther effect. Recently, many media recommendations have been implemented worldwide to foster suicide prevention and improve the quality of media reporting about suicide. Movies, TV-series, newspapers, websites and other media resources may help vulnerable people to find positive qualities, coping strategies to face off difficult moments and, as is suggested in the literature, this effect is most pronounced in an audience with increased vulnerability to suicide.

“Media can make a very relevant contribution to suicide prevention by minimising sensationalist reporting, and maximising reporting on how to cope with suicidality and adverse circumstances”.


Movie of the Month (November 2018)

In November 2018 we chose a movie for you:

Les Misérables

Directed by: Tom Hopper
Starring: Hugh Jackamn, Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Eddie Redmayne, Helena Bonham Carter
Year: 2012
Running time: 158 minutes
Among the others awards, Anne Hathaway won the “Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress” (Oscar 2013). 

PlotLes Misérables (2012) is a musical drama film, based on the French novel by Victor Hugo. Events take place in France during the early 19th century and the movie describes the stories of many characters, representing different social layers. The main characters are: Jean Valjean, released after 19 years of imprisonment for stealing bread; Javert, a police agent who dedicates his life to imprisoning Valjean once again; Fantine, a factory worker forced to prostitute herself after losing her job to support her daughter Cosette; Marius, a revolutionary student. In the movie these stories intertwine each other.

We chose this movie because we wanted to focus on two characters: Javert and Fantine.

Javert spends all his life trying to catch Jean Valjean and send him back to prison; he becomes slave of this condition and when he realizes Valjean is not only a thief but is also capable of pity (“Is he from heaven or from hell?”), understanding that he may have been wrong, he can not find a reason to live anymore.

Fantine fell in love with Tholomyes and from this relationship a children was born, Cosette; Tholomyes abandoned them so Fantine is forced to work to sustain Cosette. She is teased by her co-workers when they discover that she is a single mother and her foreman makes sexual provocations to her. The coworkers ask to fire her because they don’t want problems (“you must send the slut away, or we’re all gonna end in the gutter”) and the foreman, hurted from the secret, asks her to go on her way. The poor woman is therefore forced to prostitute herself and is mistreated and derided by men who abuse her for little money. She then no longer ate and drank anything but brandy to keep warm and not to think about his condition.

Fantine is the literary and cinematographic example of the abused women, deluded and then disappointed from men but also from other women, victim of the prejudice. Anne Hathaway, who played Fantine’s role and won the Oscar for it, said about the character: “I searched Fantine in a dark place in my heart. On the set I felt a great anger for what is done to her, the generous heart transformed into pure hatred in order to survive.(…) For a woman the condition was difficult even fifty years ago. I have also researched the present, there are many women in the world who sell their bodies to keep their children. It seems to me that this is the right historical moment to make the human condition really better“.

This is the reasons why we chose this character for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.  

Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Les_Mis%C3%A9rables_(2012_film)

“There was a time when men were kind
When their voices were soft
And their words inviting
There was a time when love was blind
(…) Then it all went wrong
I dreamed a dream in times gone by
(…) I dreamed, that love would never die
(…) But the tigers come at night
With their voices soft as thunder
As they tear your hope apart
As they turn your dream to shame”


Movie of the Month (October 2018)

In October 2018 we chose a movie for you:

Black Swan

Directed by: Darren Aronofsky
Starring: Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis and Vincent Cassel
Year: 2010
Running time: 108 minutes

Plot: the movie is about Nina, a fragile ballerina with great ambition, who is selected to play the main role in the production of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake ballet. The production requires a ballerina to play the innocent and fragile White Swan, for which the committed dancer Nina is a perfect fit, as well as the dark and sensual Black Swan, who is better embodied by Lily, the new arrival in the dance company. Nina is overwhelmed by the pressure of the competition for being the main character, which leads her to lose her contact with reality, and eventually to a tragic end, overlapping with that of the character that she interprets.

Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Swan_(film);
By Source, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=28690542

Movie of the Month (September 2018)

In September 2018 we chose a movie for you:

The Big Chill

Directed by: Lawrence Kasdan
Starring: Tom Berenger, Glenn Close, Jeff Goldblum
Year: 1983
Running time: 105 minutes

PlotThe story is about Cooper family who receive the news of their friend Alex’s suicide. At the funeral the Coopers, meet with college friends and then they all go to Coopers’ vacation house, where they stay for the weekend sharing they stories.

The movie was suggested by our member Patrizia Zeppegno who said:

It is a beautiful movie in which the group and the individual have to face the grief for a friend. This tragic event elicits different feelings in each one: sadness, regret, psychological pain, guilt, rage. The relationships among group members may also represent different feelings of the single survivor. As my master Eugenio Torre teaches “bereavement is a ‘crisis’ that may offer the chance to think about the past and go on throughout the future”.

Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Big_Chill_(film)

Thanks to Patrizia Zeppegno

Movie of the Month (June 2018)

In June 2018 we chose a movie for you:

Girl on the Brige

Directed by: Patrice Leconte
Starring: Daniel Auteuil, Vanessa Paradis
Year: 2000
Running time: 90 minutes

Plot: the movie is about Gabor and a girl named Adèle, who intends to kill herself by jumping from a bridge in Paris. Gabor intervenes to prevent her to suicide, taking interests in her. Subsequently, the movie describes their relationship during a trip around Europe: staying and working together will help both of them to develop personal resources; unexpectedly at the end, roles are inverted, and Adele will try to help Gabor in a very difficult moment.

Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Girl_on_the_Bridge


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