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Scent Of A Woman

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Scent of a Woman

Lt. Colonel Frank Slade is a depressed man. In the movie, Sent of a Woman, Al Pacino plays Slade's character who is blind and has Major Depressive Disorder (DSM IV-TR 296.2x). Besides meeting the challenge of acting blind when you are not, he also met the challenge of making his character meet the criteria for a Major Depressive Episode.

In the movie a college student, Charlie Simms (Chris O'Donell), is hired to aide the blind veteran Slade, for the duration of a holiday weekend. Upon taking the job, Slade's niece whom is his normal care taker, informs Charlie that Slade suffers from hypersomnia, alcoholism, and that he doesn't leave the house unless prompted (more than likely do to loss of interest and not agoraphobia). Although these are all symptoms of dysthmia if they were to last for 2 years, the movie doesn't actually give enough detail to make that assumption.

When the weekend begins, Charlie finds a chipper yet irritable Slade at the house, with a master plan to leave for New York as soon as his niece leaves. Upon arriving to New York Slade begins to play out what he hopes would be his last Whoo-ah, including fine dining, women, and living the good life. He lets Charlie know early on in the weekend that he plans on doing these last few things and then at the conclusion of the weekend, he has a plan to kill himself by shooting himself in the head on the hotel bed. This thought of death is recurrent and looms through out the weekend.

At one point Slade visits his estranged family which includes his brother. The family Thanksgiving dinner does not go well as Slade is an unwanted and uninvited guest. At the conclusion of the dinner Slade displays his feelings of worthlessness by telling his brother that he no good at all and he never has been.

On the last day of the weekend, Slade does not get out bed as he had everyday before. He is visibly



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