World Alzheimer’s Day: 10 films to tell a tormenting disease

The seventh art began to tell about this disease especially starting from the new millennium. If often memory loss can have, at the plot level, accidental causes (examples are wasted) or science fiction (think of the very romantic The eternal sunshine of the spotless mind – If you let me I delete you), it is in the Alzheimer themed films / Dementia that the matter becomes delicate and very heavy. Nothing hurts more than a person who no longer recognizes you. Who looks at you, but who no longer knows your name. Who no longer remembers that you were the greatest love of her, or her son, her daughter, her friend, her friend.

Alzheimer’s is a poignant disease. And we have chosen 10 films that talk about it.

1- Ella & John (2017)

American film of Paolo Virzì that suitable for the big screen The leisure seeker, the novel of the same name by Michael Zadoorian. The title (original of the film) is the nickname of the old camper with which Ella (Helen Mirren), cancer patient, and John Spencer (Donald Sutherland), suffering from Alzheimer’s (increasingly faded and forgetful) went on vacation with their children in the 70s. One summer morning, they will leave together to escape a fate of medical care that would separate them forever. Engine of their desperate journey? The love.

Kate Winslet and Judi Dench on the set of “Iris a true love”

UK Press

2- Iris – A true love (2001)

In the biopic directed by Richard Eyre, a sumptuous Judi Dench plays the role of the famous writer and philosopher Iris Murdoch. At the heart of the story is the bond – anything but sentimental – between her and her husband John Bayley (Jim Broadbent), a scholar of English literature. First we see them young – respectively with the faces of Kate Winslet and Hugh Bonneville – when he was constantly being held on the sidelines by his wife. But as she gets older, Iris will develop Alzheimer’s disease, eventually forgetting her words. Her roles are reversed: now it is she, having become docile, dependent on her husband who, in order to continue to communicate with her, will rediscover her childish language.

3- The Savage family (2007)

The late Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney play two brothers who have spent a lifetime breaking away from an authoritarian and despotic father (Philip Bosco). One day, however, a phone call will upset their lives again: that father of theirs who made them suffer so much, feared and avoided for so long, is beginning to sink into dementia. Only his children can try to help him.

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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