Still Alice

Posted on February 14, 2015

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Still Alice – Dr. Alice Howland (Julianne Moore), linguistics professor at Columbia University has a great life with a loving husband (Alec Baldwin), three adult children, a beautiful home in New York as well as a summer home at the ocean. She cooks healthy meals, she runs for exercise. One of her daughters (Kate Bosworth) is having twins, the other (Kristen Stewart) is a budding actress. Life is good, until it’s not. She’s diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s, a rare, familial type.

As the disease progresses, she uses technology to remind herself of what she needs to know. She gets lost, she doesn’t recognize her daughter, she can’t find the bathroom in her own home and wets herself, and she retains her sense of humor. She gives a moving presentation at an Alzheimer’s Association conference where she used a “yellow thingy” (highlighter) to keep her speech on track. She tapes a message to herself that when she gets to a certain point of non-remembering, she will take pills to exit life.

Having had up close experience with this horrible, heartbreaking disease, I think Ms. Moore nailed it. It did bug me that she drank white wine out of a red-wine balloon glass. And it may have been just this theater, but the sound was not synced which made it difficult in some places to understand what was being said.

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