All posts tagged: haley spencer

Shifting Depictions of Mental Illness in Film

Mental illness is an underlying force in a variety of films dating back to the 1940s. Illnesses such as mental disorders, drug, and alcohol addiction are referenced, yet because of the censorship laws, these ideas were either ridiculed or dismissed. In order to call action to these issues, the film industry had to adjust their mode of attack to relay the messages to audiences efficiently. Throughout the 1940s-1960s the censorship laws changed drastically.[1] In 1930, the Hays office implemented a new code to maintain moral values. This code required studios to submit their work for approval prior to filming. Only with this seal of approval, could production begin. The Hays office requested edits and changes of the script until it met their guidelines. The anxiety about the booming film industry stemmed from how the messages shown would affect the youth and society as a whole.  Led by Catholic advocate Joseph Breen, the Production Code Administration (PCA) was formed in July of 1934. Films were heavily censored under Breen’s leadership as he worked with the Catholic …