I am disgusted by today’s Hollywood. I don’t mean the talented men and women who truly create art, and are pillars in the cultural foundation of our country and the world, I mean the attention-seeking stunt artists who pick a movie subject purely based on shock value. Today’s target: movie writer Mike Rosolio, who sent a script to comedian and serial presidential impersonator, Will Farrell, about a dementia-stricken President Ronald Reagan.
The latest report is that Farrell will not pursue this role, and it comes only after the outrage that followed news of the script which will focus on President Reagan at the beginning of his second term, as he tragically falls into dementia. The plot line reportedly revolves around an intern tasked with attempting to convince Reagan that he is playing the president in a movie.
Criticism came in from all over, with Reagan’s children blasting the idea of a comedy based on Alzheimer’s disease, as well as patients’ families who know there is nothing funny about watching as a loved one slowly becomes a shell of the person they once were. To think, that with all of the problems this country is facing, a writer would find humor in the topic of Alzheimer’s, or even insinuates that battling dementia is funny, is an outrage, and not the least bit creative.
Rosolio, I think it’s time you found another job.
Alzheimer’s is a very serious disease that affects more than 5 million people in this country alone. It doesn’t only affect the person with the disease either, as it creates terrible pain among their families and friends. There is no cure for this disease, which robs you of the simplest freedoms, like knowing your own name.
Imagine one day your memory begins to fail you and you’re lucid enough to know what’s happening, but in the next moment you’ve forgotten what it was you noticed. Next, you forget the faces of the people that you love, and you forget what you did just moments ago. The degenerative process of Alzheimer’s, with the destruction of nerve cells by amyloid plaques, leaves the patient isolated. What about that, seems funny to you?
Thousands of men and women are working tirelessly toward finding a cure and are searching for a deeper understanding of what causes this disease. The race to raise funds and efforts to allocate tax dollars toward research centers is never-ending.
To make a so-called comedy or parody about Alzheimer’s while refusing to acknowledge what a toll this disease takes on patients and their families is the lowest form of existence. I would never call anyone who chose to star, film, write or produce that kind of junk a true talent. It’s cheap, it’s lazy, and it sends a horrifying message to today’s youth about the ethics of our country.
While I know and understand that beauty and art is in the eye of the beholder, a so-called piece of work that inflicts pain on society can only be called torture. It’s time for Hollywood to do a deep cleanse, and rid of all the waste and attention-seekers. From the mindless reality television that plays continuously on our networks, to the garbage-quality scripts that reach the director’s table, we are allowing these so-called Hollywood stars to flood our society with uncreative waste.
Instead of making money on these ridiculous shock-value gimmicks, how about creating a piece of art that would raise funds or research and awareness about the disease? How about, Rosolio, instead of producing vile films that you call work, you spend a day caring for a patient with Alzheimer’s, and then maybe you’ll rethink about what qualifies as funny.
Dr. Manny Alvarez serves as Fox News Channel's senior managing health editor. He also serves as chairman of the department of obstetrics/gynecology and reproductive science at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. Click here for more information on Dr. Manny's work with Hackensack University Medical Center. Visit AskDrManny.com for more.