Depressing movies can sometimes make your own life seem a whole lot better. When you’re down and sad, sometimes putting on one of these depressing movies will make your life seem rosy by comparison. You have to be careful though, if the movies are too depressing, it may just push you over the edge.
Here’s a list of depressing movies to either look for, or avoid. Of course we should mention that there will be SPOILERS for all these films, so keep that in mind if reading on.
Based on the most depressing book ever by author Frank McCourt, this movie is about his life as a child. His family was a poor family from the Bronx who pull up roots and move to Ireland in the hopes there there might be prosperity there for the family. It ends up being worse. Illness and death were commonplace for Limerick, Ireland. The family dealt with a never-ending cycle of poverty, starvation and sickness. This was not helped at all by the father, who made it worse with his drinking and gambling everything away and then abandoning his family. And then, things get worse…
Based on the depressing book by Cormac McCarthy, it’s also one of the most depressing movies ever as well. Things have gone bad for Mother Earth. there’s been some post-Apocalyptic disaster that’s devastated the planet leaving it devoid of all plant and animal life. Much of the human population are gone and those that are left, aren’t in good shape. Some have even resorted to cannibalism to survive, most get by with what scavenging they can do. A father and son, devastated by the loss of their wife and mother, go on a journey to search for food and shelter. They go southward in the hopes that they might find something better, a place where they might escape the horror that daily existence has become. The tales and stories of it being better, help them cross the roughest roads of their travels. The father carries a gun, it only has 2 bullets. Those 2 bullets aren’t for self-defence, they’re left for killing themselves if things just get too bad. They end up going as far as they can go and are devastated to find out that their journey was wasted, things are just as bad southward as it was in any direction. The father ends up getting shot and dying, leaving the boy alone, hoping to get by with the help of strangers.
Mel Gibson’s “inspiring” film about Jesus Christ, is really 2 hours of watching a man being tortured for his beliefs. The man preached love and tried to save the world, and he gets beat to a bloody pulp, almost beyond human recognition… for 2 long hours.
Plus, the filmmakers made the creative decision of filming the bloody thing in aramaic latin, spoken today by less than a handful of people and essentially a “dead” language, so we’re forced to read subtitles the whole time.
Back when Nicolas Cage was still considered a serious actor (Really! I kid you not!), he did Leaving Las Vegas, a movie based on the semi-autobiographical novel by John O’Brien. Cage plays a washed-up novelist whose drinking has cost him his job, family and friends. He’s in so much pain, he decides to drink himself to death, one last bender before he goes. He’s kicking back the drinks in Las Vegas when he meets a prostitute who he forms a relationship of sorts with. It’s based on a mix of love and denial of what the other one is doing in their life. Of course, once they start caring for the other, one can’t overlook what is hurting the other.. and that’s what splits them. He ends up getting worse, she ends up getting beaten. She gets together with him when he’s on his death bed and they make love. he dies.
Even more depressing, is the fact that real life author Richard O’Brien who’s life the film is partially based on, ended up killing himself just after the film finished production.
Drinks on me!
Based on the novel by Hubert Selby Jr., this movie by director Darren Aronofsky concerns the lives of 4 people who’s lives go from bad to worse because of their addictions. Two of them end up in a not-so-friendly jail because of crimes committed to support their habits. Not only do they have to deal with going cold turkey in jail, but one of them ends up having his arm amputated due to infections resulting from unsanitary injections. Their friend ends up as a prostitute and part of a degrading sex show. The mother of the addict who had his arm amputated in prison, ends up being locked up in a psych ward because she’s lost her mind due to amphetamine psychosis. Her days end up being filled with delusions and electroconvulsive “therapy”.
Don’t do drugs kids!
A very dark film by director David Fincher about two detectives played by Morgan Freeman and brad Pitt, who are tracking down a serial killer. This serial killer is using the seven deadly sins – gluttony, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy and wraith – as the basis for committing his killings. He’s killed 5 people when they finally catch up to him. As they’re arresting him, a lone delivery truck arrives, with a package for the detectives. The killer “John Smith” has one last surprise for the detectives. They open the box to discover the head of the wife of one of the detectives, “John Smith” had killed her because he was in ENVY (one of the 7 deadly sins) of the love that the detective had with her and she wouldn’t give it to him. To make it even worse, he tells the detective that she was pregnant. In a fit of WRATH (one of the deadly sins), the detective shoots down the killer brutally. He ends up being led off by the police.
I’ll admit it, when Sex and the City was a show on HBO every week, I’d usually watch it. For 30 minutes, you’d get bitchiness, martinis and the latest in high-glamour fashions. It was fun, trashy, harmless fun – and the writing was pretty good. Years later, after the show had finished it’s run, they decided to make the series a movie and stretch that 30 minutes to almost 2 hours. By then, the cast was on the WRONG side of middle aged, maybe a little too convinced of how relevant they USED to be and what worked in a half-hour format didn’t seem such fun when stretched into 2 hours. It was the only movie with “sex” in the title, that actually turned me off sex. The look of horror of on every guy’s face in the theater, dragged there by their girlfriends, will haunt me forever. Surely, one of the most depressing movies ever.