Bollywood films on Mental health to be watched for their right representation 

We have curated a list of Bollywood films on mental health that made a groundbreaking impact with their right portrayal of mental illnesses

After being stigmatized for so long, mental health is finally finding its space in pop-culture and our daily conversations and we definitely cannot ignore the important role the media has played in encouraging these important conversations. We have watched a number Bollywood films on mental health but while tackling such serious topics, some films do fall short in their representation. While the intention behind such films is commendable, the complexity of mental health issues requires careful and nuanced portrayal. This misrepresentation can perpetuate stigma and misunderstandings surrounding mental health, ultimately doing a disservice to those who grapple with these issues. To truly contribute positively to the conversation around mental health, it is crucial for filmmakers to prioritize accurate and empathetic depictions, consult with experts, and strive for authenticity in their storytelling. And there are some Bollywood films that are known for their right take on mental health. 

Here are some films that you must add to your watchlist:

15th Park Avenue 

15 Park Avenue: Trailer

Aparna Sen’s ’15 Park Avenue’ is a film that depicts Meethi’s struggle with Schizophrenia (played by Konkona Sen Sharma). It poignantly explores the disorder’s profound impact on her, her family, and relationships, delivering a realistic and emotionally charged narrative that lingers in the mind while also showing how schizophrenia’s disruptive effects demand lifelong treatment.

Karthik calling Karthik 

Karthik calling Karthik: Trailer

In the film ‘Karthik Calling Karthik’, the protagonist faces multiple issues in his personal and professional life due to his schizophrenic condition. We have seen acts where mental disorders are exaggerated for the story but the portrayal in the film is on point. While Karthik (played by Farhan Akhtar) finds his ways to cope with his condition, the story of the film keeps you on the edge of your seats. 


Barfi: Trailer

The film, “Barfi!” explores a unique relationship between a deaf-mute boy (played by Ranbir Kapoor), an autistic girl (Played by Plriyanka Chopra), and a regular person (played by Ileana D’Cruz). This refreshing film offers a compassionate portrayal of disability with avoiding pity. The story is well-crafted, delivering a powerful and transformative conclusion. It is a depiction of love and sacrifice. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) encompasses a range of challenges in social skills, communication, and behavior, with its causes stemming from a blend of genetic and environmental factors. Even while dealing with these serious issues, the film manages to warm your heart. 

Dear Zindagi 

Dear Zindagi: Trailer

‘Dear Zindagi’ is one of those rare Bollywood films that is entirely based on mental health and people going through emotional turmoil. The story follows the life of Kaira (Played by Alia Bhatt) and explores how her childhood abandonment issues shaped her as a person and affected her life in a number of ways. In a country, where people who are taking therapy and psychological help are judged, this film started the right and meaningful conversations. 

My Name is Khan 

My Name is Khan: Trailer

In the film, ‘My Name is Khan’, the character of Shahrukh Khan suffers from Asperger’s syndrome, a type of Autism Spectrum Disorder due to which he faces challenges in social interactions. While the film is not entirely based on the syndrome, it subtly reveals Khan’s uniqueness within his family and peers. The way that this film portrays Asperger’s not as a limitation but as an enriching aspect for Khan might be the best aspect of the film.

Taare Zameen Par 

Taare Zameen Par: Trailer

It is one of the most groundbreaking Bollywood films that started conversations around mental health of children while addressing the neglect of the society and Indian families. It sheds light on the struggles of Ishaan Awasthi (played by Darsheel Safary), a dyslexic child who finds it difficult to do even the simplest daily tasks due to his condition. As the people around him are not aware of his mental condition, they make it even harder for him. 

Also Read: Malayalam film, 2018: Everyone is a Hero goes global with an official entry to the Oscars 2024! 

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