6 Top Movies About Addiction: Films About Drug Addiction and Recovery

addiction movies

As cliché as it may sound, art is a reflection of society. Since creating movies is an art form, most filmmakers draw inspiration from reality, helping them make more effective and truthful films. One of the best topics discussed in films is drug addiction, how it affects people, and its impact on others.

To date, there are only a few films that tackled and discussed drug addiction in ways people readily understood. Although some do not directly indicate drug addiction or drug use, the movies come packaged with metaphors connected to the topic. But which films about drug addiction should people watch today? Here are some of the best.

1. Requiem For a Dream (2000)

jennifer connelly requiem for a dream
Requiem For a Dream

Requiem For a Dream is about a group of people who want to achieve their dreams but waste their lives.

It follows four individuals who want to achieve their dreams—a mother wanting to get out of her financial mess and Harry wanting to get out of rehab. Meanwhile, it also keeps track of Harry’s friend, Tyrone, and his drug addict girlfriend, Marion.

Harry goes back to his old ways and recruits his co-worker, Sara Goldfarb, to join. She is a mother who is on a quest to achieve her dream to regain her figure. Together, they all go back to their old ways.

But as the days go by, they only find misery and disappointment. Despite the warnings they received from their friends, they still chose to continue using the drug. The actors used are excellent in their roles. They depict their characters realistically, making them more relatable. It is not a very happy film since it tackles drug abuse and addiction.

Throughout the film, you will see the negative impacts and effects. However, Requiem For a Dream is an excellent film to watch if you are trying to understand drug addiction and how it affects people.

2. Cherry (2021)

Cherry movie

Cherry is a film following the lives of two best friends and their drug addiction.

Directed by Stephen Elliott, it stars James Franco and Ashley Benson, who play the roles of two best friends, Jay and Annie, respectively. At first, they become fast friends, and they seem happy because they are together. They love going to music festivals, where they meet other people who are into their kind of music.

However, their friendship has its challenges. Jay, a heroin addict, tries to hide his addiction from Annie, a young woman into Mormonism. The film follows their journey as they deal with their drug addiction. Jay and Anna want to be sober, but they still need their drugs. Despite their struggles, Jay and Annie still keep going.

The film shows how friends should care for each other when they feel that they need help. Cherry is a good film that should be watched by people who want to understand the world of drug addiction.

3. Beautiful Boy (2018)

Beautiful Boy movie
Beautiful Boy

Based on the memoirs of David Sheff, Beautiful Boy is about a father and son’s relationship after the son became a drug addict.

Since the son’s addiction is in his early years, the film’s narrative is from the father’s perspective. It shows how a father tries to have a healthy relationship with his son despite the latter’s addiction.

There are a lot of times the father gets frustrated with his son. More than anything else, he wanted people to understand how difficult it is to watch your son go through a severe addiction. The film stars Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet, delivering the characters’ emotions in the movie.

The film addresses drug addiction and the difficulties that come with it. The characters were developed, making the film more enjoyable and relatable to everyone. However, the film did not show the negative side of drug addiction. It only shows how a father overcomes his son’s addiction.

4. 28 Days (2000)

28 days sandra bullock
28 Days

28 Days is about a young woman named Gwen, played by Sandra Bullock, who was a drug addict but is now clean. She has been on the road to recovery for 28 days. She works in a detox center, but the world is not ready to accept people with drug addiction.

The film offers an excellent balance between comedy and drama, something challenging to execute in topics as serious as drug addiction. 28 Days follows Gwen’s journey as she tries to find herself and how she can deal with its repercussions. It also shows the challenges she faces with her co-workers and patients.

It is a good film that offers a firsthand experience of drug addiction. It depicts how people can deal with their addiction and how they can cope with the side effects of their withdrawal.

5. Four Good Days (2020)

mila kunis Four Good Days
Four Good Days

Four Good Days follows the protagonist’s journey on his last four days of life after a drug overdose. It is the first film to tackle the sensitive topic of drug overdose and its legal implications.

Despite the dark undertone of the film, Four Good Days is still a film with a lot of humor and heart. It is an inspiring story tackling how people deal with their terminal illnesses. It also shows how the people they surround deal with their death.

Four Good Days is a great film to watch if you want to know more about this topic. It is well-written and acted on material discussing the sensitive issue of a drug overdose, but it also tackles the emotions of people who are about to die.

Directed by Leo Gabriadze, the film stars Judah Lewis and Jon Bernthal, who did an excellent job and convincing performance as the film’s main character. The film also stars Famke Janssen, who also gives an excellent performance.

6. A Million Little Pieces (2018)

addiction movies
A Million Little Pieces

A Million Little Pieces is a film adaptation of the same book title. Directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson, the film tells the story of James Frey, who was an alcoholic and drug addict.

It follows his battle with addiction and how he overcomes the problems he had with drugs. It also shows his struggles against his family and the people around him.

The film tackles realistic situations that a drug addict goes through. It shows how a person’s addiction affects the people around him, especially his family. It is a perfect film for people who want to understand the world of drug addiction.


There are many films about drug addiction that people can watch today. But if you want to understand the world of drug addiction, you have to start somewhere. These films are the best ones to showcase realistic depictions of drug addiction and how it affects lives.

If you want to know more about drug addiction, these films can offer you a deeper insight into drug addiction. They may not solve your problems with drug addiction, but at least these films will help you understand more about addiction and its various effects on people.

However, the best way to understand, overcome, and get through addiction is by seeking help. If you or someone you know is struggling with a drug addiction problem, you should not hesitate to seek help.