Movie Critique on a Beautiful Mind Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

Beautiful Mind, directed by Ron Howard [...] John Nash's personal adaptation to his life. What human needs did he have difficulty in satisfying? How did his personal solutions to his problems explain both his genius and mental illness? Describe his role as a scientist and moral philosopher. John Nash's extraordinary life surmounted odds that many would find insurmountable. This is a testament to both his mental illness and the genius of his capacities.


John Nash's mind could be nothing other than "beautiful" for him to survive and thrive in his tortured interior environment, while continuing his scientific and academic duties. It is clear from the beginning of the film Nash is not your "normal" student -- his mind simply works differently. He sees things completely in his own way, from going to class, to problems written on the windows of his room, and it is not just imaginary things. He has the ability to see complex equations and patterns in his mind, and they fascinate him. Here then is an early clue as to how he later adapts to his physical problems. He does not attack problems the same way the other students do; he becomes obsessed by them until he figures them out. Once he gets an idea in his head (and here is another clue to his success), he must follow it through until he has solved it, and this was a continuing pattern throughout his life. It is this obsession which helped him solve the mathematical problems and disprove the basic ideas of Adam Smith, and it is with equal tenacity that he solves the problems of his day-to-day existence and creates a new and meaningful life around them.

He sees people that are not there, so of course his mind sees things differently. His mind is also powerful enough to ignore what his eyes tell him is there, while his brain still sees the patterns and equations that make up the most important part of his life and work, the mathematics which make him who he is. In this, he is part scientist, and part magician, constantly attempting to recognize what is real and what is an illusion in his day-to-day life. The film alludes to this near the end, when the stranger approaches to tell him he has won the Nobel Prize. Despite his success in adapting to his day-to-day existence, he must confer with a "rational" student to make sure the stranger really exists before he will accept his as real in his own mind.

Nash is an illustration of natural adaptation, or naturalism, at its best. As you said, "Adaptation is reflected in the type of narrative that we construct as scientists and moral philosophers as we go about satisfying our need and solving life's problems." Nash has adapted his thought processes (his interior narratives) to ignore what is wrong in the patterns of his life, while continuing to recognize the patterns that are correct and logical. He manages to teach for…

Sources Used in Document:

Nash always had difficulty in social situations, he was ill at ease and gauche with real people, and perhaps that is why he had to invent his closest friends in his mind. His basic social needs went unmet, and so they were "solved" in his mind. With imaginary friends, he could be himself. He could also devote all, or nearly all, his time to his problem solving, rather than wasting time with social obligations that meant nothing to him. It was not until he met and married that he really had to continually interact socially, and that is when his mind rebelled, and created problems. He solved them scientifically, as he solved all the important problems that faced him in his teaching, and his life.

It is both in spite of and because of his mind that Nash won the Nobel Prize in 1994, and perhaps he would not have had the ability to see things so clearly, and solve his scientific problems if his mind had not been what it was. Scientifically, it was brilliant, truly a "beautiful mind." Socially and morally, it made no sense; it was a sick mind that could not reach out to others, only inside itself for comfort.

In conclusion, a mind that is confused is the only kind of mind that could see people who are not there, and then ignore them. A mind that is full of brilliance is the only kind of mind that could see people who are not there, and solve the problems so it can get on with life and what is truly important. John Nash has such a mind -- a beautiful mind. It is not always the most socially correct and lucid mind, but it is a mind that can solve problems rationally and scientifically -- allowing survival and even growth. John Nash is a unique individual, who managed to solve the problem of his own life, and make it into a powerful and rational equation. Part scientist, part philosopher, part madman, and part shining star, Nash and his mind certainly deserve a place in history, a beautiful place for a beautiful mind.

Cite This Term Paper:

"Movie Critique On A Beautiful Mind" (2005, October 25) Retrieved March 24, 2018, from

"Movie Critique On A Beautiful Mind" 25 October 2005. Web.24 March. 2018. <>

"Movie Critique On A Beautiful Mind", 25 October 2005, Accessed.24 March. 2018,