Inspiring Global Health Films

This is a crowd-sourced list of over 65 inspiring, must-watch movies focused on global health topics

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As I get ready to teach my global health course online this year, I wanted to compile a list of great movies focused on global health topics.

I posed the question on Twitter and received a large number of suggestions. Here is the compilation of over 65 films recommended by a variety of people. I have provided a hyperlink to a website with more details on each movie. The list is alphabetically organized using the movie title.

I am grateful to all those who contributed to this list. I will aim to keep it updated, roughly on a quarterly basis, as I am doing with a similar list of global health books.

Happy viewing!

Title of the film

Directors

Link

A doctor’s dream: A pill for sleeping sickness

 

DNDi

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tk31iucWYdE

And The Band Played On

Roger Spottiswoode

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0106273/

Awakenings

Penny Marshall

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0099077/?ref_=fn_al_tt_2

Be Your Sisters' Keeper

Maisha Fiti

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDH3gP0MAeA&feature=emb_logo

Bending The Arc

Kief Davidson and Pedro Kos

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bending_the_Arc

Birth In Nepal

Subina Shrestha

https://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/witness/2010/05/20105372154435803.html

C'era una volta la città dei matti (There was once the city of the mad

Marco Turco

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1600395/

Chernobyl (2019)

Craig Mazin

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt7366338/

Contagion

Steven Soderbergh

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598778/

Dallas Buyers Club

Jean-Marc Vallee

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0790636/

Dark Waters

Todd Haynes

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9071322/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Dirty Pretty Things

Stephen Frears

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0301199/

El Susto!

Karen Akins

https://elsustomovie.com/

Erin Brockovich

Steven Soderbergh

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0195685/

Escape Fire

Susan Froemke, Matthew Heineman

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2093109/

Ek Doctor Ki Maut

Tapan Sinha

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0345177/

Fire In The Blood

Dylan Mohan Gray

https://fireintheblood.com/

For Sama

Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts

https://www.forsamafilm.com/

From Durban To Tomorrow

Dylan Mohan Gray

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11709738/

Ganashatru

Satyajit Ray

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ganashatru

God Loves Uganda

Roger Ross Williams

https://www.godlovesuganda.com/

Hear Our Voices - Mental Health in a Developing World

Programme for Improving Mental Healthcare (PRIME)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbpncXY1WtA&feature=emb_logo

Heroines of Health

Lisa Russell

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpVzvY636TA&feature=youtu.be

Hospital

Kesang Tseten Lama

https://www.idfa.nl/en/film/738a7b45-015e-4ebe-8074-c1da0878db17/hospital/docs-for-sale

How I Live

Meghan Shea and Mike Rogers

https://www.howilivewithcancer.com/

How To Survive A Plague

David France

https://surviveaplague.com/

Inside Story

Rolie Nikiwe

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2231299/

In Our Hands

Millie Harvey

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2jKVTXXSAhY#action=share

Life and Debt

Stephanie Black

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0284262/

Life In A Day

 

Kevin Macdonald

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaFVr_cJJIY&feature=youtu.be&has_verified=1

Living in Emergency

Mark Hopkins

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1294182/

Lovesick

Ann S. Kim & Priya Giri Desai

https://lovesickthefilm.com/

Man Facing Southeast

Eliseo Subiela

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man_Facing_Southeast

Medicine Man

John McTiernan

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104839/

Merchants Of Doubt

Robert Kenner

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merchants_of_Doubt_(film)

Minutes To Die

James Reid

http://minutestodie.com/

Nothing Without Us: The Women Who Will End AIDS

Harriet Hirshorn

http://womanatthereel.com/

Outbreak

Wolfgang Petersen

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0114069/

Out of Breath

Hein Seok

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8207890/

Parasite

Bong Joon Ho

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6751668/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Period. End of Sentence.

Rayka Zehtabchi

https://thepadproject.org/period-end-of-sentence/

Phir Milenge

Revathi

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phir_Milenge

Pili

Sophie Harman & Leanne Welham

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5827020/

Pills Profits Protest

Shanti Avirgan

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0445042/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

Poverty, Inc.

Michael Matheson Miller

https://www.povertyinc.org/

Rabbit- Proof Fence

Phillip Noyce

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0252444/

Resistance

Michael Graziano

https://vimeo.com/113626890

RX for Survival: A Global Health Challenge

Gail Willumsen

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0472972/

!Salud!

Connie Field

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0985667/

Sema

Macherie Ekwa Bahango

https://www.mukwegefoundation.org/semafilm/

Ship of Theseus

Anand Gandhi

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1773764/

Sicko

Michael Moore

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0386032/

Something Like a War

 

Deepa Dhanraj

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0307481/

Smile Pinki

Megan Mylan

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1360065/

State of Mind

 

Hopewell Chin'ono

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XKAkTmPZSs&feature=youtu.be&app=desktop

Survivors

Arthur Pratt

https://www.survivorsfilm.com/

That Sugar Film

Damon Gameau

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3892434/

The Insider

Michael Mann

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0140352/

The Lucky Specials

Rea Rangaka 

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6223432/

The Physician

Philipp Stölzl

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2101473/

The Lazarus Effect

David Gelb

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2918436/

The Constant Gardener

Fernando Meirelles

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387131/

TISHALA: Nothing to Lose Emmanuel Yegon https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBtXD2n5lak&feature=youtu.be

Toilet. A Love Story

Shree Narayan Singh

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5785170/

The Life Equation

Rob Tinworth

http://lifeequationinteractive.com/tle-film/

The Necessities of Life (Ce qu'il faut pour vivre) 

Benoit Pilon

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Necessities_of_Life

Tigers

 Danis Tanovic

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3004774/

The Price of Free

Derek Doneen

https://priceoffree.com/

Township Yogi

Peter Matthews

https://www.townshipyogi.org/

Unmasked: We All Breathe

Janet Tobias

https://vimeo.com/315337117

Virus (2019)

Aashiq Abu

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8941440/

We Were Here

David Weissman

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/We_Were_Here_(film)

Welcome To Sodom

Florian Weigensamer & Christian Krönes

http://www.welcome-to-sodom.com/

What The Health

Kip Andersen & Keegan Kuhn

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5541848/

WOMENstruate

Lauren Anders Brown

https://vimeo.com/339680104

Yellow Card

John Riber

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0275802/

93 Days

Steve Gukas

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5305246/

Madhukar Pai

Director, McGill International TB Centre

I am a Professor and a Canada Research Chair in Epidemiology & Global Health at McGill University, Montreal. I serve as the Director of the McGill International TB Centre. URL: http://www.paitbgroup.org/

2 Comments

Go to the profile of Onaoluwa Abimbola
Onaoluwa Abimbola 4 months ago

Wow!  I'm so behind with movies.  Only ever  heard of two before - Contagion and 93 days (Stella Adadevoh of Nigeria'a Ebola story I think) , but not watched any of them.

Go to the profile of Himadri Bhusan Bal
Himadri Bhusan Bal 4 months ago

Sir,

You made my task easy. 

Can you add another two movies to the list

Doctor Ehrlich's Magic Bullet
The Story of Louis Pasteur