Where is the humor in casting Will Ferrell to play Reagan with Alzheimer’s? It is a really bad idea.
Does anyone really thinks it’s funny? Depicting President Reagan’s Alzheimer’s in a movie? The latest report indicates that Ferrell has backed away from the project.
The issue is in the concept. The idea that a screenwriter could conceive of Alzheimer’s as somehow funny, is on it’s face offensive.
Will Ferrell, or his agent, found the good sense to back away from the project. You do have to wonder. Why had they allowed it to go as far as a reading?
It means Ferrell and his people found something to like about the concept. Really?
I can not think of a disease that has so much destruction in it. There are millions who have suffered. That means of course, there are millions more who have watched. Spouses, children, grandchildren. All manner of friends and family.
There is nothing funny about watching a patient regress from life as memories are erased. Often it is manifested in hostility and violence.
Once you have seen Alzheimer’s take hold, the word funny will never be apart of the discussion.
Certainly there are diseases that devastate with equal disregard, but it is the helplessness of Alzheimer patients that stands out.
The slow destruction of a loved one’s inner being takes an immeasurable toll on those who surround the victims.
Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia. It’s reported to account for a much as 80% of those who suffer from the disease that affects memory, thinking and behavior.
There is a lot of science in dementia generally and Alzheimer’s specifically.
The attempt here is not to explain what happens in the brain or why it happens, but rather to shine a light on the fact that it happens.
Looking for details on the science. Visit alz.com here
The dementia is progressive, slowly affecting brain function that will, if the patient lives long enough, come to a point that the patient can no longer function.
Alz.org, an official site for the disease, reports that survival in older patients averages eight years once the symptoms become obvious.
Dementia, defined as the loss of cognitive functions, affects an estimated five million in the United States alone. The number is expected to increase as the population ages.
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s. Medication is available to treat symptoms and slow the disease.
Other treatments are available to aid in the effects. Anxiety and sleeplessness are common and require the medications to lessen their toll.
For those dealing with the disease, the symptoms are known.
For those just beginning or suspect the disease in a family member, here is a list of signals.
- Difficulty focusing
- Difficulty communicating
- A sense of being disoriented
- Getting lost easily
- Being confused or easily frustrated
- Difficulty with physical activities like walking
- Trouble with ordinary activities
- Changes in mood — fits of anger, signs of depression, feelings of anxiety
The ravages of dementia, focused predominantly on Alzheimer’s, can not be overstated. Some experts place it as the sixth in cause of death, and ahead of cancer when only considering older people.
The misguided screenwriter of Hollywood may not be so misguided.
The person who thinks that a horrible disease like Alzheimer’s is comedy, is more properly called evil.
I am reminded of my childhood and the school yard bully making fun of the special needs kids.
I don’t understand the thinking. How can poking fun at disabilities be the subject for comedy. The whole idea is lost on me.
I think the fact that it’s a bad idea was born out with the news that Will Ferrrell had changed his mind. He will not be involved in the project.
From what I have gleaned from the news reports, Ferrell was so interested that he actually sat for a script reading. He of course, read his part. Really?
He was so unconcerned with the evil the concept holds, that he actually considered doing it?
It is why the Reagan Alzheimer’s movie is a bad idea.
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