Shining a Light: How 3 (Moonu) Tackles Mental Illness

Bipolar Disorder in the Movie

The movie deals with bipolar disorder and its possible consequences. It is a brain disorder in which there is an imbalance in the chemicals produced in the brain. Extreme mood conditions like depression and mania is very common. Usually the depression period take longer to get into mania. It is very difficult to tell by observing a person’s behaviour. Many mental conditions mimic bipolar disorder with only a few differences. Hence, any person suffering from mental illness needs elaborate clinical testing.

How much the movie is closer to reality

The movie has tried its best to educate the audience about the disorder. It is very important because most of us are unaware of mental disorders.
The movie tells about how difficult it is to live with mental illness in a family or society with no awareness. It also portrays how it is taxing for the family members who have to deal with a person with bi polar disorder. Neither are they able to find out the reasons for the patient’s strange behaviour nor can they help them reduce their symptoms. The movie elaborates the patient’s reluctance to ask for help. He is living in a different world hallucinating and exhibiting reckless behaviour. The portrayal of nature and symptoms of bipolar disorder is convincing.
A different take on mental illness
It’s a bold take that the movie begins with the funeral of the deceased hero, Dhanush. His wife Sruti Hassan dreams about him being alive and running around maze dungeon. She calls his name several times and wakes up. This is an intriguing start for a story which unveils the mind of a person with bipolar disorder.
The flash back in the film is about the young adolescents in school. The energetic attitude of the hero portrayed is just like any other adolescent boy. From being a brat at home lovingly supported by mum, vehemently criticised by dad, and infatuatedly falling in love with an adolescent girl. Once he gets married the hero of the movie begins to exhibit signs of bipolar disorder. The onset occurs with typical symptoms of hallucinations, reckless behaviour. Accompanied by feelings of being controlled by people who don’t exist. Moving through sadness and endless fear. Ram is caught between his manic and depressive states. His wife is unable to understand his mood behaviours and aloofness. She doesn’t know what to do except for crying just like people who doesn’t have an idea of possible mental disorder.


There is no denial of the exaggerations in the movie for entertainment value. This movie doesn’t account for any identification parameters for bipolar disorder. But it draws a virtual picture of a person’s mind with bipolar disorder for the audience to see it in a simpler form. It explains the disorder through the scenes in plain sailing manner. It makes the audience empathise with the characters in the movie which is great. Because the very intent of the movie is to impart the knowledge of a common mental illness which is on track.