Obsessive Compulsive Disorder as Portrayed in the Movie as Good as It Gets

Topics: Ritual, Obsessive–compulsive disorder, Body dysmorphic disorder Pages: 3 (1034 words) Published: April 3, 2012
In the movie As Good As It Gets it is very easy to see that the main character is portraying a man that has obsessive compulsive disorder. I chose to study this movie because although it is a comedy, the movie discusses a subject that is commonly stereotyped. I was anxious to see whether all the stereotypes that are given to OCD patients are correct. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is characterized by the occurrence of repetitive and distressing intrusive thoughts (obsessions), and compulsive actions and rituals performed to relieve distress or prevent harm related to the obsessions (Moulding, Doron, Kyrios, & Nedeljkovic, 2009). The main character, Melvin Udall, exhibits the strong desire to control every situation in his life. He becomes extremely upset when his daily routine is interrupted. He even goes as far as to visit his waitress’ house to find out why she did not go to work. At first glance, Udall just seems to be a mean person who has no regard for others; however, as the movie progresses one can see how Udall sometimes is conflicted internally between what he says and how he means things.

Melvin Udall is a homophobic, antisocial person that suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Udall has a reasoning behind everything that he does, even if most people cannot see it. most people just see his behavior as antisocial, but according to Udall, his behavior are necessary in order to maintain order in his world. In As Good As It Gets three very unlikely people become good friends through a serious of coincidental events. Udall helps his neighbor, Simon Bishop, a homosexual author, by taking care of his dog when he is the victim or a horrible robbery in his apartment. The dog helps Udall grow in his compassion towards people, Carol Connelly in particular. Although the reason for caring about her is selfish at first, he continues to help her because he begins to develop actually feelings for her. Connelly’s combined hospitality and...
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