Alcohol can be great fun – just to get drunk as a fart and have a laugh or merely to relax at the end of a working day with a nice cold beer. However, for some people, alcohol can encroach upon their wellbeing whenever they drink to excess. Alcoholism snatches away happiness, forces the drinker to do terrible things to maintain their habit and in some cases hide their habit. It wrecks relationships and family bonds and is generally a harbinger of doom.
I have picked eight thoughtful movies about alcoholism which treat the subject seriously and with good insight into the condition. I hope that you enjoy them.
8. 28 Days (2000)
Gwen Cummings makes a complete drunken arse out of herself at her sister’s wedding. She ruins the reception and the wedding cake, and in attempting to put things right, she crashes the wedding limo in her drunken state. When faced with jail time or a 28 day rehab programme, she opts for the latter, thinking it is the easy way out.
When she is at rehab, she refuses to join in with the activities, reasoning that she isn’t an alcoholic. However, after getting to know the inpatients, she accepts that she does indeed have a pretty bad drink problem. She has to face the complications of her long time boyfriend Jasper and how he impacts on her drinking. Gradually, Gwen begins to see the appeal of an alcohol free lifestyle and resolves to give sober living a try.
Sandra Bullock shows that she can tackle the meaty roles if she tries hard enough. There is very good ensemble acting In the film – but it is full of all of the rehab stereotypes. It is, nonetheless, an entertaining look at rehab. People expect rehab and mental hospitals to be dour places, but they are in fact packed with blackly comical situations as 28 Days shows. It is a good example of how functional alcoholics operate. Gwen has a high powered career as a newspaper columnist but still spends her life p*ssed up. It is a very slick film which plays out just like a TV movie but nevertheless, if you want a bit of alcohol based drama it is adequate enough to satisfy.
This article was first posted on August 22, 2013