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Psychological Disorders In The Last King Of Scotland

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The Last King of Scotland is a film based on actual events in the African country of Uganda. The film is based on actual events that happened with Idi Amin. The film has a fictional physician though the conversation used was an actual event. While the character is fictional, I do think the physician was displayed in a realistic light. This is mainly because it is a normal occurrence to have people stick around other people even though their character is not pleasing at all. It is however not a very common phenomenon for that to happen in day to day. It is a realistic representation because there have been cases of psychiatrists and psychologists that choose to stick around their patient’s lives out of curiosity or research. The physician in the last king of Scotland may not be the norm but it is a reality.

There are five major psychological perspectives and each of these was seen to have played a role in how the character of Idi Amin was portrayed in the film. For starters, the behavioral perspective is evident when Idi Amin is willing to do anything without caring what others think to get what it is that he wants (Nicolson, 2015). He brings out the behavioral perspective when he punishes those that go against him but rewards those that do what he wants. Through the cognitive perspective, Idi Amin was driven by the feeling he got from power. He got drunk on power and he kept wanting more regardless of what he put others through. When it comes to the humanist perspective, Idi Amin believed that he was the best ruler that Uganda had, and while he thought his actions were to benefit the Ugandans, all they did was leave harm. By believing that he was the best leader they had, Idi Amin was hell-bent on fighting anyone that tried to get his position. When it comes to the biological perspective, it is no question that Idi Amin had a mental condition and this explains why he was okay with cannibalism.

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One of the impressions that we get on psychotherapy is that it is not always as effective as using medicines would be. Idi Amin’s physician failed at curing the man off his mental habits of not only cannibalism but also his narcissistic behavior. Idi Amin got drunk on power and this led to him losing all mental health he was thought to have. Not only did he think of himself as being the greatest leader, but he also got so paranoid that he thought everyone was out to get him. This led to him not only killing those who were against him but also killing those who were on his side. Psychotherapy in this scene was not effective as mental institutionalization would have been.

In conclusion, the last king of Scotland film is one that helps us explore how psychologists are portrayed and the impression that psychotherapy has on the general public. The physician in the film was portrayed in a realistic nature. His acts are however not the norm but the exception. The film plays out the different psychological perspectives by considering how the characters are portrayed. Idi Amin being a narcissistic cannibal is thought to have mental issues which are evidenced by how he treats those around him. Psychotherapy in the film brings out the impression that it is not always the best treatment method. Sometimes institutionalization and medicine play a better role than therapy does.


  2. Nicolson, P. (2015). Gender, power and organization: a psychological perspective on life at work. Routledge.

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Psychological Disorders In The Last King Of Scotland. (2021, September 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from
“Psychological Disorders In The Last King Of Scotland.” Edubirdie, 17 Sept. 2021,
Psychological Disorders In The Last King Of Scotland. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 5 Dec. 2022].
Psychological Disorders In The Last King Of Scotland [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2021 Sept 17 [cited 2022 Dec 5]. Available from:
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