50 First Dates Psychology Analysis

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50 First Dates

In the movie 50 First Dates one of the main characters suffers from the severe condition of anterograde amnesia. The movie is about Henry Roth who is a wildlife veterinarian in Hawaii, meeting Lucy Whitmore a woman who has a short-term memory loss from an auto accident a year earlier. Henry meets Lucy at a local cafe and takes her out on a date. Henry falls in love with Lucy, but there is one problem when she awakens in the morning, she can't remember him or anything that happened that day. Henry must devise a plan to meet Lucy everyday and try to get her to fall in love with him again and again.

Lucy Whitmore is the character with anterograde amnesia. Anterograde amnesia is a loss of memory of what happens after the event that caused the amnesia. It is different from retrograde amnesia, where memories prior to the event are forgotten. To a large degree, anterograde amnesia remains a mysterious ailment because the precise mechanism of storing memories is not yet well-understood, although scientists know which regions of the brain are involved. The disease is usually either drug induced or caused by a traumatic brain injury in which there is usually damage to the hippocampus or surrounding cortices. In Lucy’s case, the amnesia is from the traumatic brain injury.

Everyday Lucy Whitmore wakes up and can’t remember what happened the day before. She wakes up everyday and thinks it’s the day before her accident. Everyday Henry has to come up with a new way to make Lucy fall in love with him all over again. Lucy’s disorder greatly affects Henry’s life since everyday he is so occupied with trying to get Lucy back. He could spend a whole day with Lucy and she could fall madly in love with him, but the next day she won’t have a clue who he is. For example, when Lucy wakes up in Henry’s bed one morning she freaks out and goes crazy because she thinks he’s a stranger. Her inability to hold on to short term memory makes it very difficult for...
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