As Steven Soderbergh eases his way into retirement, his latest of his last films – Side Effects – hits theaters this Friday. Reviews have been cautious not to reveal too much about the movie’s plot, but we do know it revolves around Rooney Mara being prescribed the latest anti-depressant drug, which leads to some very dark consequences. There’s a long history of Hollywood depicting the dangers of drugs, specifically substance abuse and its destructive power. In fact, many of them could almost double as public service announcements. We’ve gathered together a list of a few of those these movies that may as well be as PSAs – eggs, frying pan, and all — because of the way they depict just how bad an idea it is to do drugs.
THE EGG: Jim Carroll (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a star high school basketball player who has a bright future…
THE FRYING PAN: … that is derailed when he and his friends start experimenting with heroin. Jim soon finds himself addicted, kicked out of school, and resorting to robbery and prostitution to finance his next fix.
THE PSA MOMENT: Jim shows up at his mom’s apartment, struggling with withdrawal and begging for money. Afraid to make his situation worse, she refuses and eventually calls the cops to take him away. It’s an aching representation of how volatile and desperate addicts can get, and the tough choices loved ones sometimes have to make to help — like not opening a chain lock.