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The Best Movies & TV Shows About Alcohol Addiction

Updated March 6, 2020 950 votes 138 voters 9.5k views66 items

Whether they provide loads of comedy at the expense of the drunk or focus on the issues and interpersonal problems of chronic drinking, TV shows and movies about alcoholism hit both ends of the spectrum. More often than not, the best movies about alcohol addiction take the latter route. They tend to expose the downsides of excessive drinking and the negative consequences it can and often does have on the lives of the addict and those around them. Regardless, alcoholism movies and TV shows bring a great perspective to alcohol consumption—be it humorous or eye opening. 

When it comes to movies about alcoholism, popular classics like Leaving Las Vegas and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf are certainly some great options. Of course, we can't forget more recent additions like Don't Worry He Won't Get Far on Foot and the 2018 remake of A Star Is Born both show issues associated with heavy drinking. In the case of TV, shows about alcohol addiction can also take a more serious look, though comedy is a common choice—just think Mom, Shameless, and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and others featuring lovable alcoholics. For more of the drama type, good options include Californication and NYPD Blue, though there's plenty more to choose from.

So, what are the best movies and TV shows about alcoholism? Check out the list of films and series below and vote up your favorites. If you think something is missing from the list, be sure to add it. 

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  • Photo: BoJack Horseman / Netflix
    BoJack Horseman (Netflix, 2014) is an American animated sitcom created by Raphael Bob-Waksberg. BoJack Horseman (Will Arnett) was the star of the hit television show "Horsin' Around" in the '80s and '90s, now he's washed up, living in Hollywood, complaining about everything, and wearing colorful sweaters....  more

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  • Photo: United Artists
    Leaving Las Vegas is a 1995 romantic drama film written and directed by Mike Figgis and based on a semi-autobiographical novel of the same name by John O'Brien. Nicolas Cage, who has ended his personal and professional life to drink himself to the end in Las Vegas. While there, he develops a relationship with a hardened prostitute played by Elisabeth Shue, which forms the center of the film. ...  more

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  • Photo: Lionsgate
    Everything Must Go is a 2010 film directed by Dan Rush. "After 16 years devising motivational speeches that promise certain success, Nick Porter (Will Ferrell) is abruptly fired. He returns home to discover his wife has left him, changed the locks on their home and dumped all his possessions on the front yard. Nick puts it all on the line – or, more properly, on the lawn – with an absurdly escalating garage sale that becomes a unique strategy for survival. Nick comes face-to-face with a life turned inside out and discovers in total exposure an unexpected path to renewal." Quoting the program notes from the 2010 TIFF site....  more

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  • Photo: Warner Bros.
    A Star Is Born is a 2018 American musical romantic drama film directed by Bradley Cooper. A movie star (Cooper) helps a young singer/actress (Stefani Germanotta) find fame, even as age and personal battles send his own career into a downward spiral....  more

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