The journey to sobriety is not an easy path. It may take a lot of hard work and dedication to reboot your life without the substance of addiction. Watching movies about drug addiction can help you get inspired on your path to recovery. From biopics to dramas, these films provide real-life stories of individuals who have struggled with substance abuse but still stay sober.
We have listed six of the best and most highly recommended movies about drug addiction to help you and make your recovery journey easier, more comforting, and more purposeful.
10 Movies to Watch During Your Sobriety Journey
Nothing beats a good and inspiring movie to motivate you on your sobriety journey. It gives you time to relax and wind down and offers an excellent opportunity to learn from others’ experiences. Here are some of the most popular movies about drug addiction.
1. A Star is Born (2018)
Who would have thought Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper could make a fantastic duo? A Star Is Born is the story of musical star Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper), who discovers and falls in love with a struggling artist Ally (Lady Gaga). Ally’s career flourishes with Jackson’s encouragement, but their relationship deteriorates as Jackson battles his inner demons. This romantic drama follows their relationship as Jack battles his inner demons and struggles to overcome drug addiction.
2. The Basketball Diaries (1995)
Leonardo DiCaprio stars as Jim Carroll, a talented high school basketball player who falls prey to heroin addiction due to pressure from his coach and family. As a result, Jim turns to a life of crime on the streets of New York City, resorting to theft and prostitution to feed his habit. Reggie, a close friend and basketball teammate, maybe Jim’s only hope for recovery.
3. When Love Is Not Enough (2010)
Over 30 years, this powerful tale of commitment, resilience, and redemption chronicles the true story of Lois and Bill Wilson – the co-founders of Al-Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous, respectively – and their fierce but enduring love, marked by Bill’s struggles with alcoholism. This movie relates to individuals taking the difficult road of recovery, reinvention, and renewal.
4. Flight (2012)
Denzel Washington plays William “Whip” Whitaker, an airline pilot struggling with addiction to drugs and alcohol in this gripping drama based on a true story. After a crash landing goes wrong, Whip is forced to confront his demons and make the decision to get sober. The story follows his journey as he learns how to heal himself, rebuild relationships with those around him – including his son – and find a new purpose in life outside of drugs and alcohol.
5. 28 Days (2000)
After causing chaos at her sister’s wedding and facing legal consequences, a heavy-drinking journalist from New York is court-ordered to undergo a one-month rehabilitation program. Despite her initial reluctance, the journalist confronts her addiction and takes the road to recovery seriously. This movie is perfect for women who want to relate to a female protagonist and feel inspired by her journey.
6. Clean and Sober (1988)
Michael Keaton stars as Daryl Poynter, an ambitious and successful real estate agent who is also an alcoholic and drug addict. When he’s caught embezzling company funds, Daryl decides to go into a rehabilitation program to save himself from prison. This powerful film follows his story of courage and resilience as he faces his inner demons and learns how to stay clean and sober.
7. Ben is Back (2018)
On Christmas Eve, 19-year-old Ben Burns surprisingly returns to his family’s suburban house. While Holly, his mother, is relieved to see him, she is also apprehensive about Ben’s drug addiction. The following 24 hours are tumultuous, and as new revelations come to light, Holly’s unwavering love for her son is tested as she strives to help Ben overcome his addiction.
8. Four Good Days (2020)
Adapted from a 2016 article by journalist Eli Saslow titled “How’s Amanda? A Story of Truth, Lies and an American Addiction,” the film Four Good Days portrays the real-life struggles of Amanda Wendler, who battled addiction for ten years before seeking help from her parents. Starring Mila Kunis, Glenn Close, Carla Gallo, and Stephen Root, the movie offers a poignant portrayal of the challenges faced by the addict and their loved ones.
9. Rachel Getting Married (2008)
Kym, a young woman battling drug addiction, is granted a temporary release from rehab to attend her sister Rachel’s wedding. The ceremony is set to take place in the family home, but Kym’s presence and her abrasive attitude create conflict and tension. As Rachel and her musician fiancé Sidney prepare for their special day, Kym’s behavior causes strife in the household. Meanwhile, the father attempts to mediate the situation, but past resentments and hatred threaten to unravel the family. This movie relates a lot to the dynamics between recovering addicts and their supportive families and the importance of providing an environment that encourages healing.
10. Requiem for a Dream (2000)
Through its vivid portrayal of characters yearning for connection, love, and a sense of belonging, “Requiem for a Dream” is a poignant meditation on the fleeting nature of happiness. The movie weaves together two separate narratives connected by the complex relationship between a lonely widow named Sara Goldfarb and her directionless son Harry. Sara, who is overweight and yearns for recognition, becomes obsessed with the prospect of appearing on a popular TV game show and embarks on a dangerous diet to transform herself into a more appealing candidate.
While drug addiction is a severe problem, movies about the topic can offer meaningful entertainment and valuable insights into recovery. The 10 films discussed here are inspiring examples of individuals overcoming their addictions and rebuilding their lives. Whether you’re in recovery or want to be inspired, these movies provide authentic stories that will touch your heart.
If you, a family member, or someone close to your heart is going through an addiction problem, we at Oregon Trail Recovery are here to help. We provide the best drug and alcohol rehabilitation services in Oregon so that you or your loved one can recover from addiction and live a healthy, productive life. Contact us to learn more about our programs.