Still Alice

January 25, 2016 - Julianne Moore won a Best Actress Oscar in 2015 for her portrayal of a woman suffering from early onset Alzheimer's. Alec Baldwin plays her husband. Kate Bosworth, Hunter Parrish and Kristen Stewart round out the family.

Moore plays Alice Howland, a 50-ish woman who heads the Linguistics Department at Columbia University in New York. Baldwin is her husband, John, a well-respected medical researcher. Of their three grown children, only Lydia (Stewart) has ventured far from the nest. She's in Los Angeles, trying to make her mark as an actress.

Everything seems to be going according to plan until Alice starts to wonder if something's wrong. She loses her place in lectures, gets lost on her usual running route, and isn't as good at Words with Friends as she used to be. She's scared enough to see a neurologist, and he diagnoses her with Alzheimer's. John does his best to be supportive, but that's really all he can do. Eventually, Alice is let go by Columbia. And, eventually, she needs someone to stay with her around the clock. It's a losing battle, and like Alice's family, all you can do is watch.

Overall review: *** This is a very sad movie because there's really no one to root for. Moore instills Alice with as much hope as possible, but we all know basically how it's going to end. The value comes from watching her fight the good fight and watching how her family does their best to support her. It's a battle that many of us will end up fighting one way or another.