20th Anniversary Celebration – One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest / Completely Cuckoo

Tickets going fast, obtain your tickets below.

Although it’s come and gone, September 2021 marked the beginning of the twentieth year of the Frames of Mind Mental Health Film Series as a monthly event at The Cinematheque. We’re understandably proud of this achievement, and would like to thank our presenting partners, The Cinematheque and the Institute of Mental Health at the UBC Department of Psychiatry, as well as our many speakers and co-sponsors over the years, too many to count here. A big thank you as well to you, our audience, for your continued commitment to attending our events. We wouldn’t be here without you!

Along with a year-long retrospective of our best films of the last ten years (currently playing at The Cinematheque), we’ve organized this special Sunday August 14th celebration to mark our twentieth year – all offered completely free of charge. We hope you can join us.

Dr. Harry Karlinsky, Series Director
Caroline Coutts, Series Programmer

Please note you need a separate ticket for each screening below. Tickets are going fast. Reserve yours today. 


USA 1975
Miloš Forman
133 min. DCP
Sunday, August 14th, 3:00 pm

Free Admission –  3pm tickets SOLD OUT

“The greatest anti-establishment film ever made… I must’ve seen this dozens of times, and each time my heart breaks, soars, and fills with anger. The film is cinematic perfection, through and through.”

Alex Saveliev, Film Threat

 Since its release almost 50 years, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest has gone on to reach iconic significance in the American film canon and consistently rates a place on both critical and audience “Best of” lists. It also remains one of the most influential and impactful films ever made about psychiatry – one whose themes are personified onscreen in the monumental war of wills between irrepressible rule-breaker (and malingering convict) Randal P. McMurphy (Jack Nicholson) and steely, by-the-book authoritarian Head Nurse Ratched (Louise Fletcher). Filmed on an empty ward at the (then operational) Oregon State Mental Hospital, with the blessing of the institution’s superintendent Dr. Dean Brooks (who made it a condition that 79 patients were hired to work on the production and who himself was later cast as Dr. Spivey in the film), One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’s depiction of mental health ‘treatment’ as coercive and punitive helped foment the anti-psychiatry and deinstitutionalization movements of the time and contributed to negative assessments of psychiatry that remain to this day.

“With One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Forman takes his rightful place as one of our most creative young directors. His casting is inspired, his sense of milieu is assured, and he could probably wring Academy Award performances from a stone.”  Arthur Knight, The Hollywood Reporter

Please stay after the film for a complimentary reception and live entertainment!

Performers will include Sarah Jickling and Her Good Bad Luck



USA 1997
Charles Kiselyak
87 min. BluRay
Sunday, August 14th, 7:00 pm

Free Admission – 7pm tickets – LIMITED TICKETS AVAILABLE

“From the moment we’re born we’re enjoined to become part of the system and what are we on this earth for except to invent ourselves, and McMurphy… understands that better than anybody.”

Bo Goldman, Screenwriter, in Completely Cuckoo

A fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the making of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, tracing the truly Byzantine path from Ken Kesey’s international best-selling 1962 novel (written while he was working in the psychiatric ward of a California Veteran’s Hospital) to a 1963 Broadway play starring Kirk Douglas, to finally, the 1975 film that would sweep that year’s Academy Awards. Along the way intriguing details are revealed on the writing process (Kesey was initially hired, and then fired, as the screenwriter), casting (Gene Hackman and Marlon Brando were both offered (and turned down) the role of McMurphy), and production (the actors lived at the hospital for the 10 weeks of filming and were encouraged to stay in character at all times). Featuring insightful interviews with producers Michael Douglas and Saul Zaentz, director Miloš Forman, author Ken Kesey, screenwriter Bo Goldman, hospital superintendent Dr. Dean Brooks and many of the actors including Louise Fletcher, Danny DeVito, Christopher Lloyd and Vincent Schiavelli (alas, Jack’s a no-show).

“Somebody who might have just walked in might have had a difficult time discerning who were the inmates and who were the actors. It was kind of a close call there once and a while.”

Christopher Lloyd, Actor, in Completely Cuckoo

Post-screening discussion with Dr. Bill MacEwan, Jonathan Morris, Tamar Hanstke and others TBC

Dr. Bill MacEwan graduated from UBC in medicine and completed his specialty training in psychiatry at UBC in 1987. Early in his career Bill worked at the now-closed Riverview Hospital, the province’s largest long-term care psychiatric facility; for the last 19 years, his clinical activities have included work in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. Academically, Dr. MacEwan is a Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UBC, where his clinical and research interests have always focused on psychosis.

Jonathan Morris is the CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association, BC Division. He has over twenty years’ experience in community-based mental health and addictions services, policy and advocacy. Previously, Jonathan worked for the Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions as Senior Director of Policy and Legislation, responsible for providing advice on a range of complex policy and legislative initiatives, while leading several transformational mental health and addictions programs.

Tamar Hanstke is an M.A. student in Cinema and Media Studies at the University of British Columbia. Her wide range of research interests includes the mental health representations in film and TV. Tamar has recently won the Film Studies Association of Canada’s student essay prize.


Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky, Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia.

With many thanks to Paul Zaentz and The Saul Zaentz Company for their generous support of our event.

Co-Sponsored by:

MD FInancial Management | Scotiabank Healthcare+