People Are Sharing The Best Movies To Watch Once And Only Once

We all have our favorite movies, the ones we can watch again and again without growing bored.

We all have our hate-watches, the movies that are so bad that it's impossible to look away.

Then, there's another category: good movies, but ones that are so emotionally gut-wrenching that they're best watched once, and only once. A recent r/AskReddit thread asked "What movie is so good you'd recommend it to all your friends, but so emotionally traumatic that you'll never watch it again?", and the comments are full of great recommendations.

Threads (1984)

"Made in 1984, it's a harrowing depiction of a major nuclear exchange between the United States and the Soviet Union.

It is incredibly bleak and tragic--the most effective representation of the horrors of nuclear war that I've ever seen.

Everyone should watch it once, in my opinion. But no one needs to see it twice."


Boys Don't Cry (1999)

"I worked in corrections for five years and worked at the facility where one of the murderers is held. Worked the same unit he lived on for most of my time there. Such an eerie feeling because he seems so “normal” and unopposing yet you know in the back of your head he did something so horrible."


The Road (2009)

"Watched it when it first came out. Loved it. Can’t put myself through it again though. It’s so hard going and heartbreaking."


Dancer in the Dark (2000)

"Amazing performance by Bjork and brutally sad. I bought a copy of the DVD after seeing the movie because I loved it so much. I lent the disc to several friends and looked at it many times myself, but could just never summon the energy to watch it again."


Life is Beautiful (1997)

"This movie is unspeakably tragic. But its also profoundly beautiful. The love that the family had for each other gets me every time. Roberto Benigni was perfection in this role!"


Wind River (2017)

"I generally enjoy films concerning darker tones, like horror, thrillers, mystery, but something about that scene broke me for more than a week. I guess you could call that great filmmaking, but I'll never watch that movie again and do my best to think of it as little as possible moving forward."


The Pianist (2002)

"I can't bring myself to watch it again. The anger and hopelessness I felt for that man and those people is beyond compare."


Stand By Me (1986)

"The last line gets me thinking everytime; 'I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was 12. Jesus, does anyone?'"


Dear Zachary (2008)

"This movie wrecked me for at least a week. I worked in child protection. I suspected that I knew what was going to happen - I was seeing all the signs, I was seeing the failure of our systems. But when it happened I felt totally gutted."


Schindler's List (1993)

"I just watched this for the first time about a month ago. I held it together fine until Oskar broke down crying because he couldn't save more people. Then came the waterworks."


Leaving Las Vegas (1995)

"Nicolas Cage is amazing in it (Won an Oscar for it!), but as a recovered alcoholic, that film hits WAY too close to home. Good film though."


Manchester by the Sea (2016)

"This movie showed how a man can be fully socially functional while suffering from major depression. That aspect hit me the hardest."


Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

"I'm never, EVER, gonna watch that [expletive] again. It's from Studio Ghibli, the same from Spirited Away (Sen to Chihiro). An absolute masterpiece for sure, but don't expect to find happy little creatures in it."


Full Metal Jacket (1987)

"I watched the very first bit of it when I was in officer training and thought it was a comedy. A few months later I sat down and watched the whole thing. It's not a comedy..."


Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009)

"Dont do it. I love this movie but I cried from 20mins in, all the way through, and a good freakin' hour after too. Damn broke my heart."


My Girl (1991)

"I've watched that movie so many times but I still cry every time she says "He can't see without his glasses!'"


Philadelphia (1993)

"Sobbed like a little baby. Tom Hanks is so good and it’s such a painful look into how truly horrific the AIDS crisis was in the US."


Elephant (2003)

"The film is, in part, based around the idea of what would have happened if the Columbine boys were able to carry out their plans to the fullest extent. Extremely well-put-together film and it shook me to my core."


Midsommar (2019)

"I got really invested in it when I was watching it for the first time, and I've had a fear of cults since I was a kid. I don't find the film scary at all, but, by the end of it, I was just completely frozen."


Pan's Labyrinth (2006)

"I thought I was going in to see a cool fantasy flick... And it turned out to be a movie dealing with trauma, abuse, and coping mechanisms"

Still a great film, but so gut-wrenching."