Oscar winning movie “Still Alice”, depicting one woman’s struggle with early-onset Alzheimer’s, is released on DVD

Julianne Moore won a well deserved Best Actress Oscar for her performance in Still Alice. Her portrayal of Alice Howland, a Linguistics Professor who starts to forget words and struggle with her memory soon after her 50th birthday, is both moving and worthwhile. 

After a successful run in cinemas in both the US and UK, the film has now been released on to DVD and pay to view. It makes worthwhile viewing.  

Wash Westmoreland, Co-writer and Director of the movie, writes about the making of the movie...

There are so many challenges, making a film about dementia. We all know what a bad representation of Alzheimer’s on screen can look like, so with Still Alice we wanted every moment of Alice’s experience to be completely authentic. We did a tremendous amount of research, as did Julianne [Moore, who plays Alice], and checked every moment in the performance against real experiences that people had had. For example, when Alice gets lost while jogging, we wanted to know why that would happen. Is it that you don’t know where you are at all, or that you know where you are but you don’t know the way home? We consulted a group of people with early-onset Alzheimer’s, and their answers informed the way we developed not only the performance but also the camerawork, the sound design and everything else to replicate that experience.

I think dementia is one of the most difficult things you can face as a human being. It’s an extreme test of character which brings into play the whole idea of self and the notion of identity. In the film we explore what’s important in life and what isn’t as the building blocks of self fall away. The film also raises an issue that needs to be talked about more in society at large. There’s a lot of shame around the disease, and we wanted to challenge perceptions of Alzheimer’s and hopefully open up a wider discussion that urgently needs to happen.

Co-writer/director, Still Alice (2014)

Source article: "Losing it : dementia on film, stage and page" Killian Fox in The Guardian 19/07/15

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  • 20 July 2015