Director: Frederick Wiseman

Celebrated documentarian Frederick Wiseman’s first film, Titicut Follies, portrays the patients at Bridgewater State Hospital, a home for the criminally insane, who live in empty cells and are often mistreated by hospital staff. Titicut Follies is shot in the cinema verite style that Wiseman went on to use with all of his films: there is no narration, music, or commentary, only pure footage. The state of Massachusetts sued to get the movie banned, making Titicut Follies the first movie in American history to be banned for reasons other than obscenity and national security. Wiseman repeatedly appealed to the United States Supreme Court to have the film released, and didn’t get his wish until 1991, almost thirty years later. Titicut Follies is largely credited for the increased concern over the state of American mental healthcare in the decades since its release. —Andy Herrera