Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Year: 2001
Director: Jordon Melamed
Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Don Cheadle, Zooey Deschanel

Before the Dark Knight Rises. Before the New Girl. Before (500) Days of Summer.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel were just a couple of 20 year old kids acting in an uncomfortably compelling Indie film about a Juvenile Mental Institution.

Manic (and it's tagline "You Can't Escape Yourself") is about a young man named Lyle (Gordon-Levitt) with extremely violent outbursts who is sent to a mental hospital. I won't say why, for the shocking scenes where his violent erupts are one of the crucial elements that make the movie. There he is forced to interact with fellow patients (one of which is self-mutilator, Tracy (Deschanel)) and attend weekly group sessions led by Dr. Monroe (Cheadle).

This film comments on the real problems of mental illnesses and the impact society has on their condition.

It's dark. It's serious. It's real.

I thoroughly enjoyed this film and it was when I added Gordon-Levitt and Deschanel to my favorite actors list. They've been there ever since.

Score: B+

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