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I was shocked and saddened by the news yesterday when I heard of Robin Williams’ suicide and not just because we’ve lost yet another incredible actor this year. Although many people know Robin Williams by his face and work in films, I always felt like he meant a lot more to me than just that. He was probably one of the first actors to have affected me in such a way as to inspire me to pursue a career in film. I know that’s something I rarely talk about on here as this is a beauty and fashion blog, first and foremost, but I decided to open up a little bit today and discuss it.
Not just because this is a huge loss for both entertainment and the world, but also because of the terrifying effects of depression, mental disorders, and the stigma that we still attach to them. I think many of the mental struggles that people battle with that often lead to suicide might largely be prevented if we could only realize that mental disorders, depression and other issues are not something to be afraid of nor sweep under the rug. Instead, I think we should reach out to those affected by these and do our best to let them know we love and support them, accept them, and that they are not alone. Many reports being released are saying that Robin Williams was battling depression due to his drug and alcohol addictions, but other psychiatrists have chimed in, saying that his open heart surgery is a huge contributing factor. Apparently, something like 1 in 3 patients who have open heart surgery suffer effects of debilitating depression.
My only hope is that those affected by depression, mental illness, and other concerns have loved ones nearby and are supported well enough that they feel they can turn to someone for help when they feel they’re battling demons. The struggle doesn’t have to end in suicide or suffering and it doesn’t have to be fought alone. So, in honor of one of my all-time favorite actors, here are the best Robin Williams’ films and quotes according to yours truly. Love them, watch them, laugh, cry, and enjoy them in honor of the incredible life that was Robin Williams.
The Best Robin Williams Movies
What Dreams May Come
Ironically, this film is about life after death. The story goes back and forth from past to future in order to tell the story of one family who has suffered much. Robin Williams plays a loving father and husband who has just died and has to venture to hell to find his wife who has committed suicide shortly after his death. The film is really about the power of love, family, and never giving up. It was one of the most visually beautiful films of it’s time, has an incredible story, and includes power performances by everyone involved. The message of this film is wonderful. It’s loosely based on the book of the same name by Richard Matheson (although in execution, the stories are completely different).
“You’re only given one little spark of madness; you mustn’t lose it.” – Robin Williams
It’s likely that nearly every child around the world has seen the Disney Aladdin films from the 1990’s. I know they were a huge staple in my childhood, but if you, by some chance, haven’t seen it then you need to stop living under a rock and enjoy the magic finally! Robin Williams voices Genie, a genie locked in a bottle, who befriends Al, our hero, after he finds Genie’s lamp and tries to help him get his dream life by granting him 3 wishes.
“Comedy is acting out optimism.” – Robin Williams
One of the most awesome film renditions of Peter Pan, in my opinion. Robin Williams plays a Peter Pan who has grown up and forgotten all about his adventures in Neverland. His kids are kidnapped and taken to Neverland by Captain Hook and he must rescue them and re-connect with his inner child in order to do so. It’s a great family film that tells the fun tale of Peter Pan with a spin.
“I used to think that the worst thing in life was to end up alone. It’s not. The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel all alone.” – Robin Williams
Have the tissue box on hand for this one! It is likely one of the most sad films I’ve ever seen, but story and performances are incredible. Patch Adams is a medical student who works to heal the sick in unconventional ways: by making them laugh. He’s determined to help the ill in any way that he can, even if they are a bit avant-garde, much to the dismay of health practitioners around him. There is a ton of humor, sadness, and humanity in this film about one man who wants to help those who are suffering.
“No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.” – Robin Williams
This is a great comedy film with Robin Williams which my sister and I were equally obsessed with. It centers on a loving father who is somewhat of a workaholic. His wife gets sick of it, moves out, and divorces him. He still gets to see his kids, but only on weekends a few times here and there and after missing one too many visitation appointments, she denies him visitation altogether. Using his talents as a voice actor and desperate to see his kids no matter what, he has makeup artist friends help him dress as an elderly nanny in order to see his kids under the guise of being their caretaker – Mrs. Doubtfire.
“Never fight with an ugly person; they have nothing to lose.” – Robin Williams
Dead Poets Society
Robin Williams plays Professor Keating, an English professor at an all boys boarding school who encourages the students to love poetry, seize the day, and make their lives extraordinary. It’s a wonderfully inspiring film about living life to the fullest.
“What’s right is what’s left if you do everything else wrong.” – Robin Williams
There are so many others including Death to Smoochy, Good Morning Vietnam, Good Will Hunting, Jumanji, One Hour Photo, and more recently, Happy Feet and Night At the Museum. You should definitely check out his films, if you haven’t already, as they are truly great performances and stories that you’ll really enjoy.