Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Julianne Moore will lose herself in "Still Alice"; my take on the book

To prepare for the role of Alice, the college professor in 'Still Alice', 
Julianne Moore will most likely dial down the glamour much like she did in The English Teacher.  

9/9/2014
I originally wrote this last November, 2013 but with Still Alice having just made its' debut at theToronto International Film Festival, I thought I'd repost it today. It's a film I've been curious about it as I've got a deeply personal connection with the subject of Alzheimer's disease, although not early onset which plagues the protagonist of Lisa Genova's best seller. 


Still Alice, Lisa Genova's frightening novel about a college professor who develops early-onset Alzheimer's disease, is being made into a movie with Julianne Moore signing on to play the titular role. 

The book was emotional and tough to read, the movie won't be easy to watch; my mother died from complications from Alzheimer's last year, she'd been diagnosed over a dozen years earlier. Pretty horrible. You know, a lot of you do anyway, what that's like, to see a family member stricken. Far too many of our parents have been hit by the debilitating disease. My mum was in her seventie's and her disease progressed steadily and slowly over the course of fifteen years but I think she was spared some of the indignity of realizing her own deterioration. Can you imagine having early onset? To be a woman in middle age when it strikes and worse, to be aware of its' quickening stranglehold on your mind, to feel your mental acuity crumbling, your brain falling apart like a piece of puff pastry? 

I can't even stand to think about it although every time I find myself struggling to find a word, I think about it far too much. 

ANYHOO ... scary stuff, and the book, which I read with my heart in my mouth, was terrifying. Separating my personal s#!t out, the story will make for compelling cinema. If you like watching people come undone. Actually I expect it will be the kind of tough love story Amour was to watch. Best of luck to the perennially flawless Julianne Moore*; it's bound to be an intense and emotional journey for the actor.

Still Alice will be released on January 16th, in addition to a brief qualifying Academy Award run in December.

Link here to read my take on the movie 

CHECK OUT THIS 'STILL  ALICE' POST FOR PICTURES OF THE CAST INCLUDING JULIANNE MOORE, ALEC BALDWIN AND KRISTEN STEWART




The lowdown on the book from B&N:

"This may be one of the most frightening novels you'll ever read. It's certainly one of the most unforgettable. Genova's debut revolves around Alice Howland - Harvard professor, gifted researcher and lecturer, wife, and mother of three grown children. One day, Alice sets out for a run and soon realizes she has no idea how to find her way home. It's a route she has taken for years, but nothing looks familiar. She is utterly lost. Is her forgetfulness the result of menopausal symptoms? A ministroke? A neurological cancer? After a few doctors' appointments and medical tests, Alice has her diagnosis, and it's a shocker -- she has early-onset Alzheimer's disease. 

What follows is the story of Alice's slow but inevitable loss of memory and connection with reality, told from her perspective. She gradually loses the ability to follow a conversational thread, the story line of a book, or to recall information she heard just moments before. To Genova's great credit, readers learn of the progression of Alice's disease through the reactions of others, as Alice does, so they feel what she feels -- a slowly building terror.

In Still Alice, Genova, who has a Ph.D. in neuroscience from Harvard, uniquely reveals the experience of living with Alzheimer's. Hers is an unusual book -- both a moving novel and an important read."
Source: Variety

*Don't go blaming her for Carrie. I'm leaving Carrie out of this as I haven't seen the movie, which for all I know, isn't as atrocious and superflous as I've been given to understand. 

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