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20 Depressing Movies You Don’t Want To Watch Again

08 October 2013 | Features, Film Lists | by David Zou

depressing movies

Everybody knows that the way to an Academy Award is to pile on as much depression and misery as humanly possible. The more tears they squeeze from us, the more they wrench at our hearts and the more they make us want to open an artery and slowly bleed to death is directly proportional to how much of an impact a film will make at the awards ceremonies.

So, without any further ado, here are 20 depressing movies you probably don’t want to watch once more.


20. Leaving Las Vegas


The Misery: You’re essentially using your Friday-night trip to the movies to watch a deeply unhappy man drink himself to death for two hours. Uplifting, it ain’t.

Tissues Out: You know it’s coming, but when Nic Cage snuffs it in Elisabeth Shue’s arms…oh, it’s just too sad!

How To Give It A Happy Ending: Nic bins the drink and whisks Lizzie off to the nearest wedding chapel. Huzzah!


19. Dead Man’s Shoes


The Misery: Shane Meadows’ brutal revenge drama is unremittingly bleak throughout, and that’s before we get to the crushing reveal at the end of the film…

Tissues Out: The realisation that Paddy Considine’s brother hanged himself years earlier, and the weight of guilt attached, form a devastating one-two punch at the close.

How To Give It A Happy Ending: This is a gore-soaked tale of violent retribution. We’re lucky to get a vaguely cathartic conclusion! “Happy” would be pushing it too far…


18. The Constant Gardener


The Misery: Large-scale atrocity meets small-scale tragedy as Rachel Weisz’s firebrand campaigner falls foul of crooked pharmaceutical salesmen testing their wares on unwitting Kenyan patients.

Tissues Out: Weisz is so loveable that her premature death leaves both Ralph Fiennes and audience alike gasping for breath.

How To Give It A Happy Ending: Corporate corruption is eradicated forever as Weisz’s legacy takes far-reaching effect. A bit pie in the sky, but it’s surely the least she deserves. She’s just so lovely!


17. House Of Sand And Fog


The Misery: Ben Kingsley’s retired Iranian colonel wrestles with Jennifer Connelly’s washed-up addict over ownership of the titular dwelling. It doesn’t turn out particularly brightly for either of them…

Tissues Out: Having seen his son accidentally killed by the police, Kingsley’s character fatally drugs his wife before slipping a plastic bag over his head and asphyxiating himself. Grim in the extreme.

How To Give It A Happy Ending: Kingsley clears out the spare room and rents it out to Connelly while she finds herself somewhere new to live. Everyone’s a winner.

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  • Techinplain English

    Olivier Olivier is also depressing. And yes, The Mist is depressing but I can watch it more than once. And I have.

    • Techinplain English

      P.S. I sent you email through your guest writing request form. Hope you got it.

  • Andrew Shapter

    Breaking the Waves could be high on this list.

  • Sef T.

    sometimes, it is good to watch depressing movies to understand people on where they are coming from. this is a good list.


  • Thomas John Gendzwill

    Blue Valentine

  • Robert Johnston

    The Top Five “Never Again” Movie List:
    05) “Dead Man Walking” (The rape scene, plus the execution itself, is hard for me to deal with, especially if I had a downer of a day)
    04) “The Green Mile” (Watching the electrocution scenes was bad enough…but the “on-purpose” botching of one of them left me a bit queasy)
    03) “Angels With Dirty Faces” (The scene where James Cagney “turns yellow” (along with the Dead End Kids’ reaction to the news) is enough to make me never want to see it again.)
    02) “The Passion Of The Christ” (After about fifteen minutes watching the scourging scene, I had to go to the restroom and blow my breakfast into the toilet)
    01) “Old Yeller” (for the obvious reason.

  • william jerome sperber

    Merrick dies of natural causes at the end.

  • marvin nubwaxer