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Review of the Movie A Beautiful Mind

We finished watching the movie, A Beautiful Mind, starring Russell Crowe. After the movie I asked some questions such as:

1) What type of symptoms did John portray?
2) Why did he stop taking his medicine?
3) Is he violent towards himself or others?


The main character, John Nash, experienced hallucinations, delusions, and paranoia as a result of his illness schizophrenia. His hallucinations included his roommate Charles, Charles' niece Marcy, and government of defense supervisor William Parcher. His delusions led him to believe he was more than a professor, he believed he was a spy and could break codes by review of specific magazines and newspapers.

He stopped taking his medicine for several reasons: he could not do his work, could not respond to his wife, and could not help out with the baby and the house. Other reasons why an individual with a mental illness may stop taking their medicine may be because they believe they are cured, don't want to endure the harsh side effects, and ran out of medicine (perhaps because of money or forgot to take them).

The last question was tricky. Generally, he was not violent to himself or others however hallucinations led him to cause harm to himself and to his wife and child in the movie. In the movie, he believed that the government implanted a chip into his arm in order to get the access code to the drop box for classified packages. While in the hospital he clawed at his arm to get the implant out which never was there in reality. Also, while Parcher was about to shoot his wife and child, he pushed his wife while holding their baby to protect her, yet this still was a violent act.

Another important point the movie made was how even though John was on medication he could still experience some persistent symptoms such as the hallucinations, which is true for some people.

The great thing about the movie is that it also shows how a person can overcome the illness. For instance, whenever he was unsure about whether an individual was a hallucination or not he asked a trusted stander by.

Overall, the movie demonstrated an accurate account of the impact of schizophrenia on the individual diagnosed with it and their family and friends. At one point in the movie, Alicia, John's wife, explains her frustration and anger towards God and her husband, and then she remembers the man she married and everything is okay.

I am very pleased with the movie and recommend it to other people who are interested in schizophrenia.

To learn more about schizophrenia go to Embracing My Mind, Inc., the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia (Canada).


Allen said…
A lots of water + always try to be very happy = "Beautiful Mind"
Megan K said…
Thanks for sharing. I just wrote a blog on A Beautiful Mind vs Nash's real life, and I wanted to see what other people said as well now that mine is posted. Alas, I found yours. I really enjoyed your explanations since you can relate on a personal level.

I just wanted to say thanks for putting yourself out on the internet!

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