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Movie Review by Paula Grenside

A Beautiful Mind

"John F. Nash is a reserved man and a genius. When I first met him, I could not stop thinking he was the man who had been able to discover something that had been under everybody's eyes for centuries, but he was the only one able to see it...."

"The whole story for me was special. There's a whole lot of stuff in it that's not in the script, that's not in the movie, that galvanized me. I did my own research, but there are whole patches of stuff we couldn't get informed on as Nash himself couldn't remember. ...It was a scary journey," says Russell Crowe who plays John F. Nash in " A Beautiful Mind" directed by Ron Howard.

The movie tells the story of the Princeton Maths professor who, in spite of being hospitalized as a paranoid schizophrenic, won the 1994 " Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics Science" for his work on game theory.

Soon after his degree, John Nash (Russell Crowe) discovers new math models destined to find innovative applications in several fields. In less than a decade, he develops the devastating signs of a deep schizophrenia that will inexorably change his life. He meets Alicia ( Jennifer Connolly), a beautiful student, falls in love and marries her.

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Contemporarily, he is contacted by the Secret Service, is engaged in the fight against communist plots. In a memorable scene, his genial intuition finds the key to a secret code examining a multitude of ciphers on a board in front of him. He sees things the others can't see.

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The movie really aims at representing this extraordinary capability at the frontiers of rational intelligence, the power to perceive abstract structures and mathematic analysis, to give life to a man able to see shapes and meanings in a chaotic, threatening context. The "disorder" he has to cope with is not only the one caused by the Soviet counterespionage. His disease will cause him to lose his academic position, to risk his family. Only a long, tormented fight against the creations of his mind will enable him to find, eventually, a sort of balance.

The movie builds up anguished tension when the power of intelligence becomes source of constant hallucinations, of a vision continually shifting from purity to persecution.

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