Crying for Happiness photo

Crying for Happiness (1990)

A Film about Ethical Issues in Psychiatry.

Crying for Happiness raises issues, asks questions, and provokes discussions at all levels of the health care sector. The film examines the ethics of the consent process, patient and staff autonomy, and accountability. The documentary is in three parts, which can be shown separately or sequentially.

Valuable in the classroom for health care students and professionals and for people interested in patient concerns, Crying for Happiness is sure to stimulate a lively discussion and to help practitioners and patients alike in the 1990s.

"Patients' views of mental health are often different from those of health care professionals. This film wonderfully articulates the potential stress created by this dichotomy: An essential teaching aid for anyone in the health care professions."
- Dr. Vince DeMarco, M.D.

The film introduces the audience to a group of older women who have been treated for depression at an urban geriatric hospital. They attend a Day Hospital Program, which follows a cognitive therapy model combining pharmacological treatment with group and individual therapy. Crying for Happiness was filmed on location at Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care.

Crying for Happiness was created with the participation of these patents, which formed a voluntary film group. Together with director Laura Sky, they decided how their lives would be represented on film. They planned and monitored how their memories, depression, treatment and aspirations were documented.

The clinical team involved in this film is seen discussing their vision of the program along with their ethical dilemmas. The team discusses specific patient issues only when given consent by the patients.

Patients and staff had access to immediate playback of all their interviews and conversations. These portions of the film were edited at the hospital in order to maximize consultation as the film was being made.