Film Analysis

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Wambaa Mathu 9/20/07 Arch 423

ASSIGNMENT #4 ENVIRONMENT - BEHAVIOR IN FILM GIRL, INTERRUPTED I
Title of film: Girl, Interrupted Film director: James Mangold Film producers: Carol Bodie and Winona Ryder Year of film: 1999 Film stars: - Winona Ryder plays the part of Susanna Kaysen the autobiographical main character who is admitted into a psychiatric ward to be treated for borderline personality disorder following a suicide attempt. - Angelina Jolie is the character Lisa Rowe, an ex-junkie and diagnosed sociopath who enjoys making trouble for the staff and periodically escapes from the hospital. - Clea DuVall plays Georgina Tuskin a patient hospitalized for schizophrenia and becomes Susanna’s roommate at the institution. - Polly Clark is played by Elisabeth Moss. She suffers from schizophrenia and has horrible scaring on her face from an incident where she set herself on fire. - Brittany Murphy is the character Daisy Randone, a girl who spends most of the time in the institute in her single room, eating chicken and ingesting laxatives. - Whoopi Goldberg plays the role of Valerie Owens the head nurse on Susanna’s ward. The girls like and respect Valerie for her fairness and willingness to speak on their behalf. - Other stars in the film are: Jeffery Tambor as Dr. Melvin Potts, Vanessa Redgrave as Dr. Sonia Wick, Jared Leto as Tobias “Toby” Jacobs, Travis Fine as Nurse John, Kurtwood Smith as Dr. Crumble and Angela Bettis as Janet Webber.

II

Girl Interrupted is based on the memoirs of Susanna Kaysen. The story revolves around a young woman’s personal struggles and is set in the socially and political turbulent times of the late 1960’s. Susanna is a disenfranchised youth on the cusp of adulthood and feeling the increasing pressure from her parents and her peers, along with the fallout of an affair with a professor, Susanna chases a “headache” with a bottle of aspirin and vodka. As a result she is prescribed “a short rest” at an all girl psychiatric facility.

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