Must-See Movies for Those Studying to Become a Nurse

Becoming a nurse is a dream for many. Nursing is a profession that doesn’t just guarantee financial rewards, but also personal achievements and satisfaction. Those aspiring to become a nurse usually do it to help others and save lives.

The profession itself – and the healthcare industry as a whole – is rapidly growing. The demand for capable nurses is on a steep rise, and it is not surprising to find thousands of new students pursuing their nursing degrees every year.

Of course, nursing is a popular profession, and it has been featured in so many movies and series over the years. If you are aspiring to become a nurse, these are the must-watch movies and series you should add to your streaming playlist.

Patch Adams

It is difficult to imagine any other movie to start our list. Patch Adams is the all-time classic feel-good drama about a doctor who introduces humor and laughter to the medical profession. Based on a true story, Patch Adams takes you on a rollercoaster ride of emotions, with Robin Williams portraying the main character so beautifully.

The one thing that often gets overlooked about the story depicted in Patch Adams is the fact that it also encourages doctors to work collaboratively with nurses. There was a time when nurses were considered helpers and nothing more, and the Hunter Doherty “Patch” Adams transformed that paradigm and paved the way for better collaboration between medical practitioners.

Meet the Parents

Meet the Parents is not a movie specifically about nursing or healthcare, but the main character – Greg Focker – is a male nurse. The stigma around male nurses has been plaguing the industry for years, and this movie is one of the products of popular culture that tries to address the elephant in the room. Being a nurse is a calling that isn’t limited by gender or other personal characteristics.

In fact, multiple studies have shown that there are more male nursing students entering top schools such as Baylor University Louise Herrington School of Nursing Online. The introduction of accelerated nursing programs online from Baylor University further accelerates this trend. You can pursue a nursing degree at your own pace with maximum flexibility.

The Bag of Knees

Reaching the more serious spectrum of our list, we have The Bag of Knees, a documentary about nurses in several hospitals. This is the movie to watch if you want to understand the day-to-day grind, stories, experiences, and backgrounds of some of the best nurses in the country. It is also a good documentary to watch if you are an aspiring nurse.

The Bag of Knees gives you an inside look into the world of professional nurses. You can get a good idea of what to expect from a career in nursing, including the kind of challenges you will face along the way and how to best prepare for them. Nursing students often use this movie as a reference for mapping the skills that they have to master too.

The English Patient

The English Patient is a bit of a complex drama, but it is definitely one of the best movies to watch if you are an aspiring nurse. The movie takes you into the life of an Englishman who is badly burned in a plane crash, as well as the nurse treating him. It clearly shows how caring for others is a path towards healing yourself.

That’s what the main character of this movie, Hana, experiences along her journey. The movie also details the struggle of Laszlo de Almasy, the Englishman, and his wife. As mentioned, it is a complex drama, but one that will keep you glued to the edge of your seat until the end of the movie. You will learn compassion and the struggles of attending to others in this movie.


We really cannot talk about movies involving nurses without talking about Emma Thompson’s performance in Wit. A movie by Mike Nichols, the main character is an English literature professor who is struggling with cancer. Her stay at the hospital proves to be eventful, with Nurse Suzie assisting with the aggressive treatment.

The movie ends with Nurse Suzie having to respect the patient’s final wishes. The part where Thompson’s character, Vivian Bearing, was diagnosed with cancer is also a particularly powerful moment. Being diagnosed with cancer is never easy, and the way nurses are now responsible for caring for patients with cancer is worth understanding.

Prison Nurse

The last movie on this list is a classic. Prison Nurse, a movie that was released in 1938, talks about nursing in that era. Even further, the movie takes you to nurses working in a maximum-security prison. It takes a blunter approach, but that is what makes the movie so engaging to watch.

Witness Judy and the nurses in the maximum-security prison have to deal with a typhoid epidemic and the aftermath of the outbreak. The crisis tests the state of the prison with a series of challenges that make the movie incredibly engaging. Don’t let the classic take of nursing keep you from enjoying this must-see if you want to go deeper into the world of nursing.

Other Movies and Series

Aside from the movies that we discussed, there are still so many movies and series to follow if you are entering the world of nursing. After all, the profession and the industry are becoming more exciting. Grey’s Anatomy and House are the two most popular series on the market, both of which take you into different worlds.

House may focus on doctors with the cases they face, but the series still introduces you to the world of healthcare services. Grey’s Anatomy, on the other hand, often features the contrast between nurses in today’s healthcare landscape and how nurses are portrayed in the series. Both are good benchmarks to take into account.

With these movies and series to watch, you can get to know the world of nursing through interesting storylines and interesting characters. If you are looking for nursing movies to watch, these are the ones to start with. 

Flush the Fashion

Editor of Flush the Fashion and Flush Magazine. I love music, art, film, travel, food, tech and cars. Basically, everything this site is about.