Problems of Substance Abuse in Society



HUMS113 – Problems of Substance Abuse in Society

Book: Drugs, Society & Human Behaivior Seventeenth Edition

Carl L. Hart & Charles J. Ksir


For this assignment, you will watch one (1) from a selection of movies which have been produced within the past few years and address the issues of substance abuse and/or dependency as core components in the plot of the story.


After you have watched one of the films listed below – write a 5-7-page paper on the film.  A cover sheet ( does not count nor bibliography towards the total pages )  is required with 12 inch font type size, 1 inch margins on all sides of the paper – no larger (please review the requirements for the Reflection Papers for the cover sheet protocol).  The information in the paper should cover top to bottom.  If you desire to put your name, date, page number on the papers, please use only one line – not 5-6 spaces which could be utilized for dialogue.

Please do not use the greater portion of the 5-7 page requirement to retell the story to me.  I have read over 12 years of papers for this assignment and it is not necessary to retell the story to me.  Please use the valuable 5-7 page requirement to answer the questions.     

***These films contain adult themes, adult language, sexuality, some violence and images of drugs (including alcohol) and drug use****

The films for this assignment are:

1. Clean and Sober (Michael Keaton)

2. When a Man Loves A Woman (Meg Ryan, Andy Garcia)

3. 28 Days (Sandra Bullock)

4. Trainspotting (Ewan McGregor)

5. Leaving Las Vegas (Nicholas Cage)

6. Blow (Johnny Depp)

7. The Doors (Val Kilmer)

8. Drugstore Cowboy (Matt Dillon)

9. Girl, Interrupted (Winona Ryder)

10. Permanent Midnight (Ben Stiller)

11. Traffic (Michael Douglas)

12. Bright Lights, Big City (Michael J. Fox)

13. The Days of Wine and Roses (Jack Lemmon, Lee Renick)

14. Gridlock’d with Tupac Shakur and Tim Roth (1997)

15. Requiem for a Dream with Ellen Burstyn (2000)

16. Midnight Cowboy – Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight (1969)

17. Last Days  (based on Kurt Cobain) – 2005


***These films contain adult themes, adult language, sexuality, some violence and images of drugs (including alcohol) and drug use****


The paper should answer the following questions:

1. Give a short summary of the movie (IMPORTANT: A short summary – no more than 1 page – points will be deducted for a recap of the movie – it is not necessary, I have seen the movies also).

 2. How accurate was the movie in portraying the drug use? How accurate to our textbook was the film?

 3.How useful could the film be in substance abuse treatment? Could you use it with clients?

4. How did the movie affect you personally? Did your view on addiction or the drug change as a result of seeing the film?


6. What programs or services can you identify which might have been helpful to individuals impacted in the movie you selected to review?

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