March watchlist: Health gone wrong


March is a time to promote women’s history, nutritional health and poison prevention, according to the National Library of Medicine. I want to suggest some movies throwing these out the window. We love movies about people’s lives in danger. Why not use this time to breathe a sigh of relief we are not in these situations? 

“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975) – A criminal, played by Jack Nicholson, becomes a ringleader to patients of a mental institution, starting a mighty uproar. Based on a Ken Kesey novel, this shows the poor quality of institutions and sparks debates about adequate care for patients. You can find this on HBO Max and Amazon Prime.

“Misery” (1990) – After surviving a nasty car accident during a snowstorm, an author is rescued by a nurse, his number one fan. One piece of advice–keep a firm grasp on your feet. This is one of the best Stephen King adaptations, even winning an Oscar for Kathy Bates, who plays the nurse Annie Wilkes. “Misery” can be found on Hulu and Amazon Prime.

“Super Size Me” (2004) – Fast food is inevitable. You went to Raising Cane’s this past weekend, didn’t you? Director Morgan Spurlock experiments eating nothing but McDonald’s for breakfast, lunch and dinner for a month straight. He documents how America is “the fattest country in the world.” Mosey over to Amazon Prime or YouTube for this one.

“Joker” (2019) – One of my favorite movies from 2019, “Joker” highlights why more funding must go to mental health resources. This cautionary tale of society ignoring the impoverished and mentally ill intertwines with an awesome origin story of the beloved DC villain. Laugh your way to HBO Max or Amazon Prime for this.

“Run” (2020) – Hulu’s exclusive keeps your eyes peeled and teeth-gritting. Sarah Paulson plays the mother of a teen plagued with multiple maladies–wheelchair-bound, diabetes, asthma and many more. The daughter slowly uncovers a grave mystery surrounding her past and mother.

“Radium Girls” (2021) – The most recent on my list, “Radium Girls” covers true events of a deadly health craze from the 1920s–radium, a chemical that causes radiation sickness and death. See how a group of young women fight against corporate capitalism and persecution for the public safety of female workers. March over to Netflix to watch.