the heart of madness

DVD - 2017 | Portuguese
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Returning to Rio de Janeiro, Dr. Nise Da Silveira returns to work in a psychiatric hospital on the outskirts of the city where she refuses to employ the new and violent electroshock in the treatment of schizophrenics. Ridiculed by doctors, she is forced to take on the abandoned Sector for Occupational Therapy, where she would start a revolution through painting, animals and love.
Publisher: Culver City, CA :, Strand Releasing Home Video,, [2017]
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (106 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in
video file,DVD video,rda


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jul 20, 2018

Set in 1944, a woman challenging the male-dominated status quo of ice pick lobotomy and electroshock. Gloria Pires is a glorious as Nise da Silveira. If you like her, check out Reaching for the Moon, yet another real-life story circa 1950 Rio de Janeiro.

Jul 12, 2018

An excellent documentary of psychiatric care in Brazil in the 1950-s. The "revolutionary " human approach of "daring" Nise, a psychiatrist is deeply moving.

Jul 06, 2018

What we now call "Outsider Art". Just look at the work of Basquiat to see how recognized this style has become. A beautiful testimony to the courage of a crusading Brazilian doctor who didn't want to use violence or coercion on her patients.

Jul 04, 2018

Directed by Roberto Berliner in 2015 based on the true story, this Portuguese docudrama depicts the life and struggle of Dr. Nise Da Silveira who refuses to employ the new and violent electroshock therapy and instead starts a revolution through paintings, animals and love.
It is an amazing and amusing yet heartwarming story.

Jun 26, 2018

After watching this thoughtful and compassionate women doctor and how she tried to try art and animal therapy into treating clients as human beings, rather than resorting to the popular shock therapy or lobotomy practices.
I too looked this up on the internet and found that the film focused on a period in the early 1940's, shortly after her release from prison due to her Marxist's beliefs.
The film ended with a clip of the real Dr Nice da Silveira (February 1905 - October 30, 1999), as well as some clips and pictures of the real patients.
Although subtitled in English, the film was well worth watching, for the depiction of the times and ignorance of society and doctors in ways of "curing" the "incurable."
There were no extras or followup on the real events and was not even sure that the women they showed at the end was even Dr Nice, until I confirmed it on the Internet, which I did find rather lacking for a film based on facts.
Good film otherwise.

d2013 Feb 27, 2018

Quite powerful a story of Nise da Silveira, a psychiatrist, who brought changes in the way patients were treated with mental illness by taking a kinder and more human approach which proved to be very successful. Heartfelt with incredible acting!

Nov 19, 2017

Nise, a Brazilian psychiatrist, is someone you probably never heard of. Instead of locking mentally ill patients in the hospital, she attempts more humane methods. She attempts to add interesting activities, more freedoms, and craft times like drawing pictures. Based upon a true story, the artistic creations are incredible, but the road was rocky and often things got so out of control that you got to thinking that if this weren't a movie, Nise would get kicked out of the psychiatric profession. I searched the internet and found incredible paintings drawn by people that had been locked up in an insane asylum.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at SSFPL

To Top