Views & Reviews Medical classics

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: (Published 22 March 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:641
  1. Jim Pink, associate academic fellow ([email protected]),
  2. Lionel Jacobson, honorary lecturer
  1. Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Cardiff University

    Set in 1963, this landmark film took viewers into the heart of a typical psychiatric ward and exposed the realities therein. Based on the 1962 novel by Ken Kesey, it tells the story of Randle P McMurphy—an immoral, self centred delinquent who feigns insanity to avoid serving a custodial sentence on a work farm. Not realising that his release from the hospital is dependent on a sound psychiatric report, he decides to instigate his own brand of mayhem to pass the time and “show them who's nuts!”

    His antics backfire when …

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