50 First Dates

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Renz Marion V. Torres BSCPE / BE301A Reaction Paper on 50 First Dates GenPsy In the movie “50 First Dates”, the female lead, Lucy Whitmore, suffers from short-term memory loss after a horrible car accident. This accident damaged her temporal lobe; more specifically, her hippocampal region. This area of the brain is crucial in forming new memories. Lucy wakes up everyday believing it is her father’s birthday; October 13 of 2002. It was that day that she and her father got into a car accident. Every morning after that day, she wakes up and completes the tasks she had planned for that day over again. Every night, while she sleeps “her slate is wiped clean”, as said in the movie. The damage experienced by the hippocampal region of her brain has left her with a form of amnesia, referred to in the movie as “Goldfield’s Syndrome”. While this disease is completely fictional, there is, however, a type of amnesia –anterograde amnesia- that describes Lucy’s condition well. Anterograde amnesia is when one can no longer form long-term memories that have occurred after a specific event. These events would include brain surgery or a brain injury. So while all of Lucy’s memories gained or experienced prior to the accident are intact (people’s names, her childhood, who she is, where she lives, etc.), everything learned and experienced after is, in a sense, “new” to her every single day. Despite these facts, Henry Roth –the man who fell in love with her in the movie- chose to believe that somewhere, deep down, she remembered him every day. Though her doctor told him that this was impossible and her memory impairment would never change, something did happen. Somewhere, in part of her brain, images of him were stored because she dreamt of him every night. Apparently, instances like these are possible in real life too. 50 First Dates is a great romantic comedy starring

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