MHAW2021: Mark

As an extension of Mental Health Awareness Week 2021 the UCO is shining a spotlight on the importance of good mental health throughout the month of May. As part of this we're inviting our staff, students and others in the UCO community to share the ways they support and manage their own mental health.

Today Mark, Course Leader for our M.Ost course, tells us why you can't beat a good film:

"I tried a lot of the common things that people did in lockdown, including jigsaw puzzles, paint by numbers and walking (I discovered that there is a 18 hectare patch of health land ten minutes from my house which despite living in my town for twenty years I have never known about). In the end though my great escape was what it has always been - movies.

Obviously the cinemas closed their doors as well but I still found lots of great films to watch at home (not travelling into London on the train for just one week gave me the money for a subscription to Disney+ for a year). There were some superb new online releases like The Assistant, Uncut Gems, Host, Mank, The Trial of the Chicago 7, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (which addressed some themes that reflected last year's other big headline) and Rocks. Then there were some classics that I revisited and saw in a new light under the current situation, including An American Werewolf in London, Twelve Monkeys and Jaws (seriously watch Jaws again, it is like a whole metaphor for the government's handling of COVID despite being made in 1975).

Some of these movies were watched alone, some with family and some with work friends through the UCO cinema club we ran for a while, but they all helped to keep me going." 

If you're in need of some movie escapism check out Empire's list of feelgood films for inspiration.


How do you support your mental health and wellbeing? Share your tips or read others using #ucomh21.

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