Prozac Nation


Prozac Nation

Critics Consensus

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Total Count: 25


Audience Score

User Ratings: 21,358
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Movie Info

Following up his critically acclaimed debut Insomnia (1997), Norwegian director Erik Skjoldbjaerg makes his first English-language feature with this adaptation of the book by Elizabeth Wurtzel. Christina Ricci stars as Lizzie, a prize-winning student heading off to Harvard where she intends to study journalism and launch a career as a rock music critic. However, Elizabeth's fractured family situation including an errant father (Nicholas Campbell) and a neurotic, bitterly hypercritical mother (Jessica Lange) has led to a struggle with depression. When her all-night, drug-fueled writing binges and emotional instability alienate her roommate and best friend, Ruby (Michelle Williams), as well as both her first (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers) and second (Jason Biggs) boyfriends, Lizzie seeks psychiatric counseling from Dr. Diana Sterling (Anne Heche), who prescribes the wonder drug Prozac. Despite success as a writer that includes a gig writing for Rolling Stone and some mellowing out thanks to her medication, Lizzie begins to feel that the pills are running her life and faces some tough choices about her future. Prozac Nation (2001) is a longtime dream project of star Ricci, who also serves as one of the film's co-producers.

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Critic Reviews for Prozac Nation

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (7)

  • Those of you who were waiting so impatiently for the release of this movie version of Elizabeth Wurtzel's chemically enhanced Weltschmerz will be as sorry as the film itself...

    Jan 19, 2018 | Full Review…
  • There's really no reservoir of sympathy deep enough to support a whiny, navel-gazing Harvard student who turns her depression into a show-stopping spectacle.

    Jan 5, 2007

    Scott Tobias

    AV Club
    Top Critic
  • The self-centered brat at the center of Prozac Nation spends most of her time making life miserable for everyone around her, but there's little reason the public should have to pay for the same privilege.

    Jan 5, 2007

    Todd McCarthy

    Top Critic
  • Ninety-eight minutes of this movie and you may find yourself reaching for Prozac or the antidepressant of your choice. A cheap shot, to be sure, but the movie earns it.

    Mar 4, 2005 | Rating: D+
  • Truly depressing, a dark, mean and screechy film that still looks half-finished after years on the shelf.

    Mar 4, 2005 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…
  • In portraying Elizabeth Wurtzel, Ricci displays range, depth, and courage.

    Mar 11, 2003 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Prozac Nation

  • May 18, 2016
    The strong performances from Ricci and Lange elevate this depressing drama and prevent us from fully hating a troubled character who can't stop hurting everyone around her, and it is very sad how it shows the tragic effects of depression on a person and on those who love her.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Jun 11, 2011
    The memoir, 'Prozac Nation', is competent enough to deserve to be in the cannon of memoirs on depression but it's really not that good. Wrutzel is a perturbing narcissistic and spoiled bitch with little, if any, depth that was showcased in her crude and idiotic article on David Foster Wallace's death, turning the saddest event in the literary world in decades and fashioning into a me-me article. A pathetic human if ever there was one. Not to mention her memoir spawned, what I call, Prosac-chic wherein rather than the famous CK heroin-chic style of the 90's was drastically changed to making depression into a hip thing. There isn't much worse than being depressed and having to watch a bunch of youngsters shaking their pill bottles, making bad art, and constantly reminding you how their thirteen-years of existence are so much worse than yours. The fad has only gained in momentum. The adaptation does have redeeming qualities, mainly in the five minute scene where Lou Reed is present, as the directing is good, it has a nice style, and the actors do what they can with their non-characters. The first half is about partying at Harvard (ugh) and the second half takes a large nose dive into the (lack of) depth in the manic/depressive stage. Nothing works. A self-centered brat as a protagonist whose behaviours are more narcissistic and deranged than they are manic depressive.
    Jonny B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 27, 2011
    A depressant's nightmare based upon a true story. A young woman's adventure into coming to grips with her parent's divorce, being comfortable with herself as she goes through her freshman year in College and eventually working for Rolling Stone Magazine...despite the anguish she went through...finding help through therapy...the anguish the heartbreak is all portrayed exceptionally well by Christina Ricci. See this it is really good. Plus the way Christina narrates her journey is incredible.
    Fascade F Super Reviewer
  • Jan 20, 2011
    More of a lifetime movie, than the generation capstone it was trying to portray. The performances are melodramatic and repetitious. Even the quality of the film comes off 10 years older than it actually should be. Could have used some more grit!
    Christopher H Super Reviewer

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