I just finished watching a movie called A Beautiful Mind. I actually had watched this movie before (partly) but did not have the urge to really finish it. Two days ago, during our random chat, Anggi showed and recommended the movie to me. Listening to her opinions about the movie, I could not help but promised myself to watch the movie again and finish the movie this time.
This weekend then is dedicated to watching the movie at my messy yet comfortable room. The movie starts with the leading actor as John Nash appears in a university setting. The movie then gradually develops over time following John’s life. The movie itself is based on a novel with the same title that talks about John’s life.
The movie tells a story of a brilliant mathematician, John Nash, and how he deals with his uneasy life. Despite his brilliance, he has a hard time socializing and interacting with his peers. He spends his time alone, thinking and working on his papers, mostly about equation and formula. He has this favorite spot to study which is at the library where he writes down his messy work on the windows. I find this particularly unique and so nerdy.
He has this roommate named Charles to whom he often talks. The movie, as I said, follows John’s life from time to time, place to place, moment to moment. The settings are mostly in some different campuses like Princeton, MIT, and Harvard, depicting a typical life of a professor.
An intriguing scene first appears when John meets his love, Alicia. She is actually one of his students and she cannot help it but fall in love with her professor. I love this scene as I can see the awkwardness between these two lovebirds. It is sweet to see how sweetly aggressive Alicia can be towards John, and how John confusingly reacts to her behaviors. This is a scene where John and Alicia attend a part which is also their first date. Here, I can tell how much Alicia loves John, and John cannot help it but to love her back.
Falling in love is not easy for John or for other geeks for that matter. He surely falls in love with her but does not quite sure about their future together. Surprisingly enough, John proposes to her at one restaurant.
They then get married but lead only a short period of time of happiness. John has this kind of secret job together with his friend, Parcher. He is working on some codes and trying to break them. He hides this work from Alicia which confuses her and bring them both to an argument.
Despite the confusion, Alicia still believes in her husband and assumes that everything is okay. One day though, when John is giving a lecture, there are some people suddenly come to him. Having bad feelings about them, he runs away , leaving the guests in confusion. One of the people, it turns out, is a psychiatrist named Rosen. Dealing with the angry John, Rosen takes him to the hospital. This is when Alicia finds out that her husband has schizophrenia. This is the most interesting part, actually, the how John deals with his illness. I must say that the acting of both John and Alicia are really great. I can feel the struggle and the emotion. It is sad to see how hard John fights the illness and how tough it is for Alicia to deal with her sick husband.
In the curing process, I slowly learn that John cannot differentiate between what is real and what is not which is a common symptom of schizophrenia. It turns out that the roommate and the working partner are not real. They both only live in John’s imagination. It can be seen from the movie how hard it is for John to overcome this particular illness and bury those two fictional figures in his life.
From the emotional perspective, it can be seen very clearly how strong Alicia is during the curing process. She is so patient with her husband and is there for him in this difficult time. There is this one scene where Alicia tries to have sex with John, but he cannot feel her touch as he looses his sexual desire due to the medication. Alicia then goes to the bathroom and cries her heart out. She screams, throws a glass to the mirror, and cries. Yes, dealing with that kind of situation will be hard for anyone.
There is also one scene where John unconsciously puts his baby in a bathtub full of water. He is like loosing his mind for a second and lets his baby there almost drowning. Alicia then hurries to see the baby and lifts him. It is painful to see how sick John is in this scene as he keeps talking that Charles is there watching over the baby. Alicia knows certainly that no one is there, no one except John and his hallucination.
This movie really captures the loyalty of a wife to her husband. There is a scene where Alicia hugs John and encourages him to recover. Instead of leaving, she is there being a loving and supportive wife. I believe that this is the true medication that works for John, his wife’s love.
The story then continues with John getting older and recovering from his illness. He goes back to campus trying to find his place there. It is difficult for him to be fit in again, but thanks to his friend, Martin, from whom he finally gets his old and glorious life back. Being a professor again, he is loved and respected by his students. He even gets selected to be a Nobel peace prize receiver for his incredible work.
The movie finally ends with John giving his Nobel acceptance speech. This will be my favorite part in the entire movie when John beautifully thanks his wife for what she has done and for being the reason in his life. Here is the beautiful speech I am talking about.
So, the movie earns 4 out of 5 considering the casts acting, the settings, and the true emotion it brings. Even though the movie was released in 2001 – such a long time ago, but it is still, and will always be relevant to watch anytime. Such an incredible movie it is.
Apart from the touching love moments between John and Alicia, other touching moments are also the ones that pinpoint the struggle of schizophrenia’s patients like John. Having the illness will be hard for anyone, and people should not discriminate or judge the people who do have it. Relating to the illness, I find it quite interesting as it touches our psychological aspect and emotions. The actor in the movie then can act on it really well. I even browse things, like stories about schizophrenia, on the Internet, which is really out of curiosity. I guess I like that kind of movie – the one who has something – an issue, an interesting conflict, a unique story to tell – something that makes me think and explore more after I watch it.
So, guys, that is all. I really recommend you to watch this movie (if you have not) because it is really good, and for those of you who have, do keep in mind that people always have a battle we do not know nothing about, so be kind.