Film festival sheds light on mental health

Film festival sheds light on mental health

ROANOKE, VA. - Dozens of people showed up at The Grandin Theatre for a free screening of 'Silver Linings Playbook," a movie about a character battling Bipolar disorder. One local organization is changing the stigma of mental health through entertainment. People like Barbara Pence and Sharon Rippee arrive early to get good seats. "I've seen the movie before," says Pence. "It's about mental health, Bipolar and it's just how the actor gets so much better after rehab and through his life."

October 10th is World Mental Health Awareness Day and through the month of October, Mental Health America of Roanoke is holding its annual Mind Matters Film Festival. It showcases movies that shed light on different mental health issues. "The way we set up Mind Matters this particular season," said Ashley Reynolds Marshall, the Executive Director of Mental Health America of Roanoke. "is we picked a topic for each week. Last week was suicide with 'Skeleton Twins,' this week was 'Silver Linings Playbook,' we'll be exploring Bipolar disorder." Reynolds Marshall says mental health can be tough to talk about and in some cultures, even taboo. But, the film festival allows people to open up. "Film is an art form," said Reynolds Marshall. "That tends to bring us together and allow people to explore mental illness"

Pence and Rippee believe the screening of 'Silver Linings Playbook' could be an opportunity to learn something new about Bipolar disorder. "Maybe i'll have a friend in the future that suffered from it and i can talk to about," said Rippee. "Or I think these movies are really informative to the general public, you know? The public can relate to these movies."

The next free showing at Grandin Theatre is October 17th at 7:15pm. The movie is titled 'Still Alice' and will depict early on-set Alzheimer's Disease.

 


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