"The Vow" and Amnesia

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The movie "The Vow" starring Channing Tatum (YUM) and Rachel McAdams involves the loss of memory of the main character Paige from a tragic car accident. After the accident she is unable to retrieve any recollection of her marriage to her husband Leo. vow.jpg
Rather than the more common anterograde amnesia, she contracts retrograde amnesia. She is able to form new memories easily and even remembers previous to her meeting her husband but cannot remember him at all. Memory.jpg
This disturbs him deeply, as one may expect in this situation. Many films have amnesia within the center of the movie's plot, many times in an unrealistic manner. This film seemed to take a more reasonable approach about it because there was no "aha!" moment or the recovery of the memory as is oftentimes portrayed. The movie does not delve deeply into details of memory but does not lead viewers astray either. Paige did not ever end up remembering the memories that she lost. Neither did the real person, Kim Carpenter, which is what I would take as the reason for the more realistic portrayal of amnesia, since it really happened to her. Overall, it paints a fairly good picture of amnesia while of course adding the typical hollywood drama and romance. Amnesia is more often than not displayed wrongly or to the extreme in film and The Vow is one movie that seemed to have attempted to keep it to a level of believability due to its roots in actuality.

3 Comments

After seeing The Vow, I was somewhat disappointed in the ending and how Paige never regained her memory. You're right, many movies do have a false portrayal of memory loss and i was waiting for that "aha!" moment throughout the movie where she would run into his arms and all would be right in the world again. When that never happened, I was kind of left to wonder what was going to happen and was at a loss for how to feel. But I do agree that the portrayal of memory loss in this movie was more realistic and showed the true tragedy of such an event. I can't imagine what it would be like to have an entire life that I couldn't remember and how confusing that would be.

Ooh. I really need to see this movie. Great assessment of the believability of the films psychological side. You showed that we really can use the knowledge we learn in this class in every day situations. :D

I like how you describe the role of memory and where it came up in a recent movie you saw, even if it is a chick flick. Although I never really want to see this movie, I do like how it is more than just a love story and that there is some science and tragedy behind it. Also, the fact that it is based on a true story makes it a little more interesting as well.

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This page contains a single entry by bride025 published on March 10, 2012 4:38 PM.

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