I already saw this film. It was called "A Song for Martin," directed by Bille August, and told the story of a composer who gets Alzheimer's. In "Iris," the title character (Judi Dench) gets Alzheimer's and her husband or lover or whatever he is, John Bayley (Jim Broadbent), tries to take care of her for as long as possible. We do a lot of flashing back to the young Iris (Kate Winslet) and the young John (Hugh Bonneville) so we can see that they weren't always old and disgusting. There are tons of skinny dipping scenes to demonstrate they weren't always big and lumpy, too.
The fact that I have seen "A Song for Martin" should send a warning signal to anyone foolish enough to consult this review, or any film review, for that matter. I was entirely incapable of enjoying this film because I had already seen one exactly like it. So what am I supposed to do? Take that whole first Alzheimer's film and just, um, forget about it?
Oh sure, some of you would say, "You're a film critic -- you're supposed to put that aside and be objective." Ha! The fact is, I'm all but incapable of evaluating this movie since I spent the entire time battling an overwhelming sense of déjà vu. Before you run off and consult Roger Ebert, however, keep in mind that most critics have also seen "A Song for Martin," so their reviews will be similarly skewed by the fact that Hollywood's paucity of ideas has forced us to watch the same movie twice. Veteran movie reviewers learn to compensate in such situations with massive doses of heroin or, in the case of Roger Ebert, by mainlining pure theater popcorn "butter" throughout the film. (You think I'm kidding? I've seen him wheel in the IV during film festivals.)
Incidentally, I am sick and tired of seeing Kate Winslet naked. She may think her nipples are beautiful, but she's not forking over $8 for the privilege of gazing at the freakish things. Have you ever seen a map where a specific region is colored to represent the plague spreading over time? If the tip of Kate's nipple is Paris, the areola is the plague as it spreads inexorably over the rest of France. I see Kate naked and I wonder how the people of Nice could be spared while the poor people of Grasse are wiped out.
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