Still Alice Screen 13 articles

Still Alice

2014

Still Alice Poster
  • Still Alice may seem subtle on the surface, but it hits all the dramatic notes found in the type of tepid middlebrow fare tailor-made for Oscars these days. Moore's brave and reflexive speech to a group of Alzheimer's researchers is moving, albeit in the most calculated way, as if it were crafted specifically for the short-sound-bite world of award-season promotion.

  • Moore has always thrived playing individualist square pegs struggling to squeeze into the round hole of constrictive societies. Here, though, Still Alice is itself the round hole, and one often senses Moore's toil to flit across her countenance the history of a woman that the film, based on Lisa Genova's bestselling novel, is uninterested in etching. It does, though, dubiously present Alice's decent into dementia as a snowball of stakes-raising dramatic tension.

  • Relieved to find that it won't be a Pacino-style fiasco should Moore finally win the Oscar—this is hardly her best performance, but she's extremely good, often working against the grain of the material in a productive and poignant way... But [when Alice] gets up and gives that earnest speech and the movie turns into an Alzheimer's PSA and I slumped lower and lower in my chair. Better than I expected, overall, but the fact that I'd just revisited a bunch of scenes from Safe didn't help.

  • What comes to the screen feels safely detached, meandering, occasionally maudlin, familiar yet harsh. Still Alice is less a movie than furniture: a slab of moments intended to elevate, a pedestal for a performance (or two, as it turns out).

  • All but groveling for an Oscar nomination, Julianne Moore stars a linguistics professor trying to maintain her dignity after she's diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease. This middlebrow drama presents the heroine's mental deterioration calmly and sensitively, though it feels pretty thin on the whole.

  • Still Alice doesn’t entirely transcend its disease-of-the-week trappings... But the movie matches its subject with a beautifully appropriate intelligence, and is smartly structured, switching perspectives from Alice’s self-preservation to her family members’ dealings so imperceptibly that a decisive moment never arrives. Viewers are left to arrive at their own version of catharsis, but they are far from helpless.

  • Though shot in the stolidly inconspicuous style of a low-rated cable drama, Still Alice is rarely anything short of compelling, in part because its sense of progression and scale offers such a distinctively unsentimental take on the terminal-countdown tearjerker.

  • A middle-class weepie in the way that e.g. It Follows is a middle-class horror: victims in the old disease-of-the-week TV movies used to flail around in panicked ignorance till set straight (and hopefully helped) by the 'experts' - but this is a case of doing everything right, educated and proactive in our brave new world of technology and strong institutions (prompt scans, sympathetic doctors, bracelets reading "Memory Impaired" in case you get lost), and still the horror is relentless.

  • Pretty straightforward film, and also pretty conventional (faces blur out when the disease starts to take hold of her, yawn), but Julianne Moore is excellent. It’s all rather terrifying. And Kristen Stewart broke my heart a little bit. Her recitation of the monologue in Angels in America, and the WAY she did it? I felt like I was holding my breath the whole entire time. Go, Kristen Stewart.

  • While Still Alice shares a number of uncanny similarities with the modern maudlin weepie (tragedy, beaches, an excess of emotion) it never lurches into the realm of Sparksian melodrama. What keeps the film from feeling cloying or manipulative is its insistence on exploring the dissolution of Alice’s interior intellectual rather than sentimental world.

  • Playing an elegant, erudite Columbia professor gradually losing her well-appointed existence to Alzheimer’s disease, Julianne Moore didn’t need to be half as good as she is in Still Alice merely to win an Oscar... Moore, however, goes for extra credit with the piercing specificity of her character’s slide into the abyss: subtly shifting the set of her jaw from scene to scene, she articulates newly evasive words with a determination that soon snaps achingly into defeat.

  • To watch Julianne Moore portray a 49-year-old woman diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s might be as close as one can get to understanding the disease and its effects on patient and family without having oneself received a positive diagnosis. Make no mistake, though: Still Alice is no downer. It is a closely observed and brilliantly performed story of struggle and — how can I write this out without appearing trite? — love.

  • Alice is in some ways her most grounded character. She is more in possession of herself, there’s a density of being that forever escapes her more marginal characters... Moore has created a mesmerizing portrait of a woman possessed by a disease but also still possessed of a self. Perhaps we can leave the question—neurological, existential—of whether Alice is still Alice unresolved.

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