- Mental Health
Movies And Documentaries About Eating Disorders
The Truth About Nancy
This film follows the story of protagonist Nancy, played by actress Tracey Gould (herself in recovery from an eating disorder), after her graduation from high school. She heads off to college and, anxious about her future, begins to isolate herself. Her anxiety channels itself into obsession over food and weight. She starts to exercise compulsively and gradually eats less and less. Her parents fail to acknowledge the enormous changes in their daughter until Christmas, when her anorexia can be ignored no longer. Attempts to get her help are met with fierce resistance from Nancy herself until at last, her father decides to take her to court and win guardianship of Nancy so he can force her into treatment.
This compelling story strives to portray the dangers of body obsession in the world of competitive gymnastics. The young gymnast Andie, played by Amy Jo Johnson of the sitcom "Felicity," starves herself almost to death in an attempt to make the Olympic gymnastics team. Andie's coach makes matters worse, with her motto "the lighter the better." But as Andie loses weight and stability, she sees her dreams retreating from her grasp. Two-time Olympic gymnast Cathy Rigby stars as an assistant coach, as well as serving as technical advisor and choreographing the gymnastic routines. .
Available on Amazon
The HBO Documentary film Thin follows four women from ages 15 to 30 years old as they undergo treatment at Renfrew Center, a residential treatment facility specializing exclusively in eating disorder recovery. Their perpetual personal battles between recovery and relapse are heart-wrenching, the relationships formed between them intense and complex. Director Lauren Greenfield manages to look beyond the emaciation of the patients and the restrictively scheduled program into the "meat" of the matter. What causes eating disorders? Is recovery possible? What does it look like? And how can we stem the growing numbers of young anorexics and bulimics?
Dying to Be Thin
This NOVA documentary introduces us to eating disordered individuals from all walks of life: dancers, gymnasts, students, sisters, daughters, friends. Examining the causes behind, as well as the experience of, anorexics and bulimics today, this program also goes behind the scenes in the research labs and medical facilities where possible treatments for these debilitating illnesses are being studied.
Narrated by Lauren Hutton, this documentary follows the experiences of four families whose lives have been irrevocably altered by eating disorders. The signs and symptoms of eating disorders are presented side-by-side with the real-life stories of those who suffer.
Along with in-depth interviews with bulmics 16-year-old Suni and 20-year-old Annie, the film features 26-year-old Marya Hornbacher, author of the groundbreaking memoir "Wasted," the chronicle of a 15-year battle with anorexia and bulimia.
The girls' families also speak out about the emotional and financial toll their loved ones' eating disorders exact, as well as the strength they found, and still find, to make it through the ongoing recovery process.