I love watching a good film, all snuggly under a nice warm blanket. I also go to the cinema as much as possible, did a little film study at university and I just love the artistic form itself.
However, I don’t feel legitimate actually critiquing films because I don’t know enough about them: I watch a lot of stuff and think about what I have seen, how things and people are portrayed and why, but that is as far as my opinions can go.
So, today I’m going to tell you what I thought about Still Alice.
Still Alice is a story about a 50 year old woman who is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. I suggest you take a look at the trailer before reading my review, it’ll describe the storyline better than I can!
As this trailer suggests, this was an incredibly emotional film. I was initially interested because the main character is a professor of linguistics, and I love hearing and reading about that field since I studied it for a while at university. In the film, the fact that Alice is so intelligent makes her mental decline so much worse: she once defined herself by her intellect and doesn’t know what to make of herself once her disease starts to make a real impact on her day to day life.
The scenery in the film is beautiful, and filmed efficiently in my opinion: the shots get tighter, smaller and narrower as the disease progresses, evolving from long beach fronts to dark living rooms. I thought it was a clever way to portray visually what is going on in the character’s mind.
Apart from the emotions portrayed in the film that I found quite extraordinary, I also learned a lot from Still Alice, namely how such a diagnosis is made and what mental exercises can be used to test the mind. It also made me think about the impact the disease can have on the patient’s loved ones, and how people react differently to bad news.
I highly recommend you watch this film but be warned: you’ll need a big box of tissues and something fun to do afterwards so you don’t stay depressed for the rest of the day!