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Visions of Grandeur

Inside the Beautiful Mind of John Nash lies madness and magic

As a romance, between a madman and the woman who idolized him and loved him and never left him even after his descent into illness, it's wrenching. As a thriller, about Nash's secretive work for the government and its shadowy operatives, it's captivating. And in the end, it's a film about which one doesn't want to say too much; it plays almost like The Sixth Sense, in a way, where things seen aren't always to be believed. To decipher them here would ruin the ambiguity, spoil the romance and dull the ache. What could well have been a lachrymose exercise, of the sort Howard's known for fashioning, is instead as haunting and long-lasting as a reverie -- or a hallucination, perhaps. Appropriate, indeed.

In A Beautiful Mind, director Ron Howard places us inside the head of John Forbes Nash Jr. (Russell Crowe) until we feel as dizzy and baffled as the tormented genius.
Eli Reed
In A Beautiful Mind, director Ron Howard places us inside the head of John Forbes Nash Jr. (Russell Crowe) until we feel as dizzy and baffled as the tormented genius.

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