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April 27, 2017
Mental Health On Screen: Our Picks For Hot Docs 2017

Megan Rafuse

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Top Picks 2017

The annual Hot Docs festival opens this weekend, running April 27 to May 7, 2017. Engaging with the stories of others who are exploring mental health issues (and issues that impact our mental health) is a great way to shift your perspective.

Here are some of our top picks for films to check out - plus the reasons why we think they are worth watching.

Click on the titles below to visit the official film page on the Hot Docs website. 

32 Pills: My Sister’s Suicide

Hope delves into her sister’s life in an effort to explain why her sister killed herself.

Why? Many of us struggle to talk about suicide and maybe this film will give us a starting point for these important conversations.

A Better Man

A woman sits down to talk with her abuser 20 years later.

Why? The criminal justice system fails many survivors of sexual assault and this film presents possibilities for restorative justice.


The filmmaker explores family history to try to explain her sister’s struggles with bipolar disorder.

Why? Learning and talking about bipolar and other experiences of mental illness helps destroy stigma and make society more understanding and inclusive.

Sisters in the Struggle

Shot in 1991, this film amplifies the voices of Black Canadian Women and their battles at the intersection of racism and sexism.

Why? A lot of work about racism is from the US and yet these conversations and movements for change are still so critical in Canada. We also know that racism has profound impacts on the health and wellbeing of all people of colour, especially those who are Black and Indigenous.


An exploration of living with chronic fatigue syndrome.

Why? Living with chronic illness takes a physical, mental and emotional toll and we all might have lots more to learn about CFS.

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