12 Movies You Didn’t Notice Were About Mental Illness
11. The Little Mermaid
Mental illness in a wholesome kids film? It might seem strange, but anyone with half a media studies degree overanalysing Disneys films can find a tonne of disorders in its animated universe and The Little Mermaid is no different. Take Ariel, for example. Her overflowing collection of dinglehoppers, snarfblats and thingamabobs is basically compulsive hoarding epitomized which experts say can be a manifestation of severe depression, psychotic disorders and OCD, while her sidekick Sebastians constant worrying is classic sign of anxiety disorder. Then theres Ursula whose preoccupation with vanity, power obsession and generally selfish, manipulative behaviour is a textbook case of narcissistic personality disorder. Anxiety and narcissism might be used for comedic effect in The Little Mermaid but more recently in films like Pixars Inside Out, Disney has started to more explicitly address issues of mental and emotional wellbeing.
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