If you've been meaning to read Alice Munro, but just never found the time (like me), now there's a good reason to start.
Away From Her is a love story that deals with memory and the circuitous, unnameable paths of a long marriage. Married for 50 years, Grant (Gordon Pinsent) and Fiona’s (Julie Christie) commitment to each other appears unwavering, and their everyday life is full of tenderness and humour. This serenity is broken only by the occasional, carefully restrained reference to the past, giving a sense that this marriage may not always have been such a fairy tale. Then one day they realise Fiona's memory lapses are just the early manifestation of Alzheimer’s disease.
Fiona moves into Meadowlake, a retirement home that specializes in the disease. One of the rules of Meadowlake is that a patient may not have any visitors during their first month in the facility in order to “adjust.” After an excruciatingly painful 30 days separated from his wife, Grant returns to Meadowlake to discover Fiona seems to have no memory of him and has turned all of her affection to Aubrey (Michael Murphy), another resident in the home.
When Aubrey’s wife, Marian (Olympia Dukakis) returns from her vacation, she suddenly takes Aubrey out of Meadowlake. Fiona is devastated by the separation and enters into a deep depression. Her condition deteriorates rapidly. Grant, fearful for Fiona’s life, embarks on the greatest act of self-sacrifice of his life as a means to attaining his wife’s final happiness.
Trailer for Away From Her via YouTube (The song playing in the trailer is Ray LaMontagne's Be Here Now):
Visit the Away From Her website