Vertigo

A Hitchcock classic, an intricate psychological thriller, this movie is all about dreams. Dreams are the stuff that psychoanalysts can’t stop thinking about. Freud began the whole science with his Reflections on Dreams. The dream is a puzzle, a rebus – we don’t know exactly how to solve it, neither does the hero in the film.

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Shortbus

John Cameron Mitchell, the director of the explosive transgender rock musical, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” broadens his investigation into sexuality with Shortbus (2007). Shortbus is an exploration into the lives of several characters living in present-day New York as they navigate the humorous and tragic intersections between love and sex.

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Shirley Valentine

Shirley Valentine — a funny film, a bittersweet film an all-too-true-to-life film…

This film compellingly captures an actual moment in the life cycle — the love cycle — of many women. Some might call it a midlife crisis and there are indeed lots of midlife issues here: the children have left, Shirley is noticing the first effects of gravity, she is realizing she is on the downward slope of life, only a little time left, only one life to live. Is this little life all there will be for her?

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Revolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road is the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a couple living uncomfortably in the suburbs. The story is set in 1955. World War II, and the memory of service in the European theater, looms in the background for the men. Frank and April believe themselves to be superior to their friends and neighbors. Frank has contempt for his job, and most of his co-workers. April felt she was destined for better things. The life they have today was not planned, it just happened, and both regard it as temporary.

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Pulp Fiction

Pulp Fiction is a movie about lowlifes.

It presents us with three of the oldest chestnuts in the world: Two hitmen out on a job; a boxer who is supposed to throw a fight; a guy who’s supposed to take out the boss’s lady. The characters in these three stories are linked by their connection to a crime boss, Marsellus, and framed by the story of a young couple in the midst of robbing a diner.

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Pan’s Labyrinth

Set in civil war-torn Spain, young Ofelia enters a world of unimaginable cruelty when along with her pregnant mother, moves in with her new stepfather, a tyrannical military officer. Retreating from reality into her own imagination, Ofelia discovers a mysterious labyrinth and meets a faun who sets her on a path to saving herself and her ailing mother. But soon these imaginative escapes begin to blur the lines of experience, as Ofelia finds herself at the tipping point in a vivid battle between the whimsical and the nightmarish; between good and evil.

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Night on Earth

While a pleasant conversation delights, a really interesting conversation changes the participants. Night on Earth shows us five vignettes about a cabbie and passenger set in five cities across the globe in a single night. As a result of their interactions on the way to their specific geographic destinations, each pair winds up in emotional places they could never have anticipated. Jarmusch’s pairs amaze, seduce, antagonize and shock. It’s a ride you’ll be glad you took.

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Margot at the Wedding

Margot at the Wedding is a dark and, at times, hilarious drama directed and written by Noah Baumbach. The story is centered around an upcoming wedding, as Margot and her son travel to attend the wedding of younger sister Pauline and Malcolm. The film’s primary focus examines what occurs between siblings when unresolved childhood issues follow them into adulthood. This film takes an uncomfortably close, but realistic, look at how both hostility and love coexist towards our siblings.

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Last Tango in Paris

A man and a woman — complete strangers– meet and try to encounter one another without all the accumulated baggage of their past identities.

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The Kids Are All Right

Nic and Jules have been raising their teenage kids with many typical bumps, bruises, and achievements But when the kids decide to meet their sperm donor, new issues get raised for the family. Commitments, love, desire and conflicts are old issues in families, but the twists can change over time. This touching comedy takes a look at how family is defined and at the changing nature of relationships.

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Intimate Strangers

Intimate Strangers is a gem. In a world in which, as ones of the characters says, “People have lost the art of listening,” this film is about the power of listening. It is a psychological mystery and a dry satire of psychoanalysis.

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The Hedgehog

In a posh Paris apartment, an eleven-year-old girl uses her father’s old camcorder to intrusively document the lives of her parents and sister. Unable to bear the idea of a future life as inauthentic as theirs appear to her, she dramatically rehearses how she will kill herself on her twelfth birthday.

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Harry and Tonto

A wonderful and wondrous film, rich in emotional, psychological, developmental issues. Themes ranging from Gilgamesh and Enkidu to mortality and mourning to the relationships between men and women are all interwoven through the story.

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Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Rather than to accept the reality of life in its own terms, we often shape our perceptions according to what we wish to see, and in time these perceptions often reinforce these wishes.

A quirky and poignant film, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind dares to spend 90% of its time travelling through the recesses of memories and dreams of our protagonist’s mind, creating a film embedded in the human psyche.

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The Crying Game

Commentary on the movie by Bernard Feinberg, MD. Originally produced for the Celluloid Couch series of the St. Louis Psychoanalytic Institute.

This is certainly a one-of-a-kind film. A man desires an alluring and mysterious woman. The woman is sphinx-like in that she knows some vital truth about the situation which the man has to discover for himself. The paradox lies in the fact that the truth, which the man eventually discovers, is the very thing which stands in the way of their union.

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Intergenerational Conflict in Family Business

Intergenerational conflict is a heavy sounding concept. History is replete giroust_oedipus_at_colonuswith examples from Abraham and Isaac, Esau and Jacob, Cain and Abel, Hamlet, etc. One of the more compelling stories from a psychoanalytic perspective is that of Oedipus Rex, a tale by Sophocles believed to have some basis in fact.

Family business is often like a kingdom where there are rights of succession, betrayal, even seduction, etc. Is this, however, a healthy resolution and transition of power and/or leadership? There are many forces at work in every human family and probably the greatest of these is the desire to grow up, to fully become a person in one’s own right.

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Cuando Los Niños Tienen Miedo

La Doctora Henares es una psicoterapeuta y psiquiatra especializado en niños y adolescentes, es miembro facultativo de el Instituto Psicoanalítico de St. Louis, MO. En este video, la Dra. Henares ofrece consejos prácticos a padres de familia, maestros, educadores y personas que trabajan con problemas de salud mental, acerca de como ayudar a niños que sufren de miedo y angustia en tiempos como el presente en donde incertidumbre de el futuro es estresante.

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When Children are Fearful

Child psychotherapist and Institute Faculty Member Lourdes Henares-Levy, MD, offers down-to-earth advice to parents, teachers, counselors, and all who work with young children on how to best deal with a child’s fears and worries in these uncertain and sometimes frightening times.

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Childhood Trauma in Cultural Context

Today’s children face enormous challenges resulting in both acute and chronic traumatic effects. Some types of trauma covered in this talk include:

– community violence such as gangs, school shootings, and police brutality
– war, terrorism, and refugee status
– physical and/or sexual abuse
– loss of a parent/significant adult
– parental/family violence
– chronic neglect
– digital/media over exposure

When looking at what trauma “is” and how it is “experienced” we must look at the cultural context of the child and family. When it comes to processing trauma, a child’s culture typically falls on a continuum ranging from the traumatic disruption of a child’s individual mind to the disruption of an entire community’s way of life. As teachers, clinicians, and professionals, what do we do when it is not only the child’s mind, but the child’s entire cultural way of functioning that is overwhelmed by trauma? Further, how do cultures that privilege a collective mindset mediate childhood trauma when compared to more individualistic cultures?

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Attachment at the Extremes

Consequences of adverse early experiences have been demonstrated clearly, and profound compromises in attachment, as well as other domains of development, have been described. Intervention to remediate adversity has been shown to be effective, particularly if secure attachment relationships with caregivers can be fostered. Fostering secure attachments is a successful strategy for remediating adverse early experiences and promoting enhanced social and psychological functioning in subsequent development. Although social and emotional development are exquisitely vulnerable to adversity, they are also quite responsive to intervention.

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Psychoanalytic Perspectives: Empathy with William Kelly, MD

Empathy: In all twenty-three volumes of Freud’s works the term only appears fourteen times. However he regarded it as basic to the process and the practice of psychoanalysis. He referred to empathy as a “mechanism by means of which we are able to take up any attitude at all towards another’s mental life.

Like all psychoanalytic theories, self psychology attempts to explain human motivation. Over a thirty-year period, Heinz Kohut and other self psychologists evolved a new perception, a new understanding, of what patients were trying to tell us.

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Understanding Race, Social Class, and Culture Through a Psychoanalytic Lens

This lecture was an interactive dialogue, focusing on the ways the social categories of race, social class, and culture can be understood from a psychoanalytic point of view. The evening looked at the way “whiteness” is constructed in U.S. society, along with the implications for the racial and social class status of various ethnic groups in this country — and explored the intersection of racial, social class, and cultural categories, both in psychotherapy and in daily life.

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Psychoanalytic Perspectives: Self Psychology

Self psychology is a relatively new theory within the field of psychoanalysis. The name was chosen because of gradual recognition that the difficulties some people experience have to do with self-esteem regulation and maintenance of a solid sense of self in time and space, often referred to as self cohesion. Previously, these were considered to be narcissistic problems and usually not amenable to psychoanalysis.

Like all psychoanalytic theories, self psychology attempts to explain human motivation. Over a thirty-year period, Heinz Kohut and other self psychologists evolved a new perception, a new understanding, of what patients were trying to tell us.

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Il Postino

The Postman is about a simple man named Mario who discovers through his meeting with an extraordinary man, the poet Neruda, that he too is extraordinary. In its affectionate telling, The Postman comes as close as any film to uncovering the working heart of poetry, how it need not be arcane, and how it can be a conspirator in getting one a little sex.

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The Many Faces of Eros

The Many Faces of Eros: Through the Eyes of a Midsummer Night’s Dream

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