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In what might be more aptly titled "The Demi Moore Show," the actress garners an amazing amount of screen time by playing one woman with two lives. Marie resides outside a quaint village in France, writing book reviews for the New York Times, while raising two daughters amongst fields of flowers. But whenever she retires for a good night's rest...
She immediately awakens in a trendy New York flat. As Marty, a highly successful literary agent, she has an exciting career, beautiful clothes, and men begging for her attention. In fact the only thing wrong with either life, is not knowing which is real.
Aware that this is no normal sleep disorder, both Marie and Marty (lets call her M&M) seek professional advice. Although both psychiatrists warn her of the dangers to her mental health and try to persuade her that the other life is only a dream, M&M doesn't want to give up either existence.
Complicating the issue is the introduction of a man to each world. Now M&M must choose between two lovers as well. (These relationships are depicted a few times with lots of heavy breathing and "polite" nudity.)
Of course the audience also plays ping-pong between her two identities. But as the story progresses it becomes apparent that our indecision only exists because the writer (perhaps afraid anyone with half a mind could figure it out) has deliberately withheld key information from us, instead of hiding the clues amidst the script. As any psychiatrist worth his salt would have asked the exposing questions, I left this film feeling my mental capacity had been insulted.
Unfortunately this movie, which portrays the importance and impact of friends and family, also glamorizes mental illness and offers a simplistic wrap-up to a complex situation. I can't imagine anyone struggling with their sense of identity and self esteem to this extent not requiring lengthy counseling. Because these are serious issues in the lives of many teens, and because M&M finds all her answers from her lovers, parents may want to look closely at the messages this story sends.
Passion Of Mind is rated PG-13: for scenes of sexuality.
Cast: Demi Moore
Studio: 1999 Paramount Classics