The drama film “A Beautiful Mind,” directed by Ron Howard is an excellent movie. The uplifting film is the biography of mathematician genius John Nash (Crowe), who while at Princeton University he discovers a principle equation that changed economic theory. His tremendous career was diverted by his struggle with paranoid schizophrenia, which almost destroys his family and himself. The irony of his dilemma was that the drugs that kept his psychosis controlled also prevented his mind from thinking at the level he had before.
In order for him to once again think logically, he stopped taking the medications that controlled the schizophrenia, which lead to the delusions. He eventually learned to use his own mind without medication, even though he continued to suffer with the illness. He goes on to win the Nobel Prize and continues to teach mathematics at Princeton University. This film has so many features that make a movie worthy of watching. The wonderful and powerful acting of Russell Crowe was outstanding.
I was in awe of his skill in playing this character, especially when considering the extreme difference from the characters in his other movies, such as the Gladiator and Cinderella man, which I both love. Russell Crowes acting was one of the big reasons this movie was so brilliant. He has the ability to step into a role and make the audiences believe that he is actually the character in real life. His performance seems perfectly natural, making it seeming and authentic.
The actual true story of Nash is so compelling and draws you in with the masterful insight into many aspects of a genius at work. The way Ron Howard directed the plot was fascinating and keeps your mind captivated. The first half of the film is viewed from Nash’s perspective alone, so the first remarkable effect is to place the viewer inside the working, creative and pattering mind, which gives a chill of recognition of the feeling that “sometimes you just know something”.
Then slowly we are introduced to confusion, and we are surprised and shocked as Nash when his psychosis manifests itself, blurring the line between reality and paranoia. The viewpoint changes to an objective interpretation, compelling us to feel sympathy as an outsider observer. Crowes portrayal of Nash gradual degeneration into schizophrenia is believable, and as he transforms both mentally and physically, we are lead through his emotional and psychological struggle. We see how Nash’s mind is conflicted and torn between reality and fiction.
A lot of people compared “A Beautiful Mind” to “Vanilla Sky”. In my point of view, Vanilla sky did not come close. It loosens its emotional grip and becomes a disorganized and abstract realization, which confused me to the end of the movie. It was often frustrating and did not keep my interest. It was really hard for myself to get a handle on the characters to connect on a emotional level. As were, as “A Beautiful Mind” has a flowing storyline that could be followed, even as we experience the confused mind of Nash. The images are accompanied by complementary music by James Horner.
It is an exceptional soundtrack that adds so much emotion to the film. I am a fan of Horner, his stylistic diversity is repeated in the past with his work on Braveheart and Titanic, two of my favorite films partly due to the wonderful captivating music. In “A Beautiful Mind” the elegantly complex score completes the drama of an intelligent, schizophrenic mathematician. For a thriller segment the score entitled “The car chase” a solitary plinking piano and wordless vocalizing against a haunting swelling orchestra embody the sound of danger.
Another of my favorite scores is entitled “Alicia discovers Nash’s dark world” a chorus filled with swirling violins and muted piano chords, to illustrate the romantic and hopeful aspect of the story. With all that said, I highly recommend “A Beautiful Mind”. A complex movie about mental illness as well as the power of love and the triumph of the soul, that will bring tears to your eyes. In addition it is dramatic, descriptive, detailed, reflective, enthusiastic, heroic and in all, a beautiful film.