YMMV / Girl, Interrupted

  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Did Lisa know about Daisy's sexual abuse at the hands of her father because it happened to her, too?
    • Why did Lisa bully Daisy, in particular, so much? Is it because Daisy was simply an easy target, was it jealousy as Daisy herself suggests or was it Foe Yay?
    • Is Lisa actually a sociopath? She fits a lot of the criteria, but the fact that she seems to genuinely care about Susanna (and Jamie) in her own, deeply twisted way could be used to argue that she does have some degree of concern for others, and thus isn't a true sociopath. Plus, it was the sixties — misdiagnoses, especially with young women, weren't exactly uncommon. (Hell, they're not uncommon now.) And, of course, that raises the question, if Lisa isn't a sociopath, what is she?
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: The ice cream parlor scene, specifically where Lisa stands up for Susanne after the wife of the professor Susanne had a brief affair with threatens her.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: After Brittany Murphy's death, Ryder stated that she couldn't watch this movie. Which is understandable given that Daisy (Murphy's character) passed away in the bathroom and how Murphy herself met her end.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: "Have you ever confused a dream with life? Or stolen something when you have the cash?"
  • Les Yay: Lisa and Susanna. Lisa bringing Susanna into her circle and her borderline-stalker behavior towards her comes off as a rather obsessive crush sometimes, and the two of them are rather fixated on each other. Lisa seems to take Susanna's recovery as a personal betrayal, raising the question — does Lisa resent that Susanna's getting better... or that she's going to leave her? The two run away together at one point, which doesn't help, nor does the fact that Lisa has the most Pet the Dog moments towards Susanna. There's also the fact that Susanna forgives Lisa at the end, and says that she wants to see her again, even after all Lisa did. Susanna even kisses her!
  • Narm : Many of the arguments and histrionic outbursts can be perceived as this, after a couple of viewings. What's dramatic on the first viewing might induce some eye-rolling in subsequent ones.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Some deleted scenes show some very disturbing hallucinations of Susanna's, such as bending her hand in unnatural positions (this is when she believes that she has "no bones" in her hand), and of blood pouring out of the meat refrigerators at a supermarket. The best example for this trope from the book itself, though, would be when Susanna and a few other inmates go to the Maximum Security Wing to visit someone who was recently transferred from their wing. ...Let's just say there is a very good reason why some of the inmates there were locked up.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Vanessa Redgrave as Dr. Sonia Wick technically appears in three scenes, but she absolutely steals her sole major scene.
    • Both Kurtwood Smith and Jeffrey Tambor are scene-stealers in very minor roles.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Daisy's death.
    • Lisa finally breaking down in tears towards the end of the movie.
    • The scene with Susanna and Valerie in the former's room, after she's returned to the hospital following Daisy's suicide, especially given that Susanna's speech resonates with a lot of viewers:
      Valerie: What would you have said to her?
      Susanna: I don't know. That I was sorry. That I will never know what it was like to be her. But I know what it's like to want to die. How it hurts to smile. How you try to fit in but you can't. You hurt yourself on the outside to try to kill the thing on the inside.
  • Vindicated by History
    • Despite Angelina Jolie's critically acclaimed performance, reviews upon its initial release were unenthusiastic with many critics deriding it as overly melodramatic. Nowadays, it's viewed as a classic and has gained a sizeable cult following.
  • The Woobie:
    • Polly - even Lisa admits it.
    • Melvin takes the piss a lot, too, but when he arrives after Daisy's death and stands by himself in the rain, contemplating his utter professional failure, you can't help but feel bad for him.