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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Still Alice (2014)

A linguistics professor (Julianne Moore) at Columbia university is diagnosed with early onset of Alzheimer's disease. With her husband (Alec Baldwin) and adult children to support her, she puts up a valiant fight. Okay, let's get the positives out of the way. Moore, no surprise, is excellent. She gives a strong emphatic performance that cuts to the quick. She receives solid support from Baldwin and Kate Bosworth as her oldest daughter. But as cinema, this is a decidedly mediocre piece of film making. Outside of the acting (which redeems the film), it can never rise above a manipulative Lifetime movie. When Moore gives a stirring speech about dealing with Alzheimer's, there's a cut to the audience wiping away tears thus cluing us that we should be crying too. It's that kind of a film. There was a 1999 TV film called FORGET ME NEVER with Mia Farrow that dealt with the same subject and which I found far more compelling. Still, movies like this are what the Oscars are all about hence the term Oscar bait. Directed by Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland from the novel by Lisa Genova. With Kristen Stewart as Moore's other daughter whose relationship provides some of the more trite moments in the film.

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