David Ansen

Stories by David Ansen

  • Feasting At The Festival

    Imagine a Wal-Mart superstore that contains Prada boutiques, antiquarian bookstores, Japanese comic books and semiautomatic weapons, and you have an inkling of the Toronto Film Festival's vast, eclectic largesse. It's become North America's most important film festival by offering... everything. You can catch up with movies unveiled at Sundance and Cannes, get a juicy taste of Hollywood's fall offerings and sample movies from Cameroon to Croatia. The big studios love to showcase potential Oscar entries in Toronto: local audiences are notoriously friendly, star-struck and likely to leap to their feet in applause.I spent six days at the festival, and there were 256 movies to choose from--and almost as many publicists trying to convince you that theirs was the one to see. For a movie critic, this is the equivalent of the Tour de France, except that you rarely see sunlight and no one's testing you for illegal substances. Fortunately, if a movie should prove beyond hope, you can dash for...
  • SNAP JUDGMENT: MOVIES

    The Aristocrats Directed by Paul ProvenzaClose to 100 comics spin baroquely disgusting variations on one classic dirty joke. That's the whole movie, and it's hands down the funniest of the year, both pushing the boundaries of bad taste and exploring how those boundaries keep shifting. Gilbert Gottfried, Sarah Silverman, Bob Saget and a mime are standouts. The cumulative effect is oddly uplifting: it may be (and feel free to quote me) the first feel-good movie made out of fecal matter.
  • EYE OF THE BEHOLDER

    Jim Jarmusch had it from the start. So did Gus Van Sant. So, it seems, does Miranda July. It's an original way of looking at the world. A sensibility unmistakably their own. A singular style.When Jarmusch's "Stranger Than Paradise" appeared in 1983, you knew you were hearing a new cinematic voice: droll, hip and oblivious to the conventions of Hollywood storytelling. Jarmusch has stayed true to his minimalist vision for 21 years. His latest, "Broken Flowers," which won the Grand Prix in Cannes in May, is his best work in a decade. Bill Murray stars as Don Johnston, a well-to-do suburban ladies' man who learns he may have a 19-year-old son he never knew about. The news comes via an anonymous letter in a pink envelope just as the latest of his girlfriends (Julie Delpy) deserts him, but it hardly gets a rise out of the stone-faced lothario. Pushed into action by his excitable neighbor Winston (Jeffrey Wright), who fancies himself a sleuth, the impassive Don hits the road on an...
  • SNAP JUDGMENT

    2046 Directed by Wong Kar WaiNo one captures the ache of missed romantic connections like the director of "In the Mood for Love." In this gorgeously melancholic fresco of love affairs, Tony Leung Chiu Wai plays a womanizing pulp-fiction writer in '60s Hong Kong whose fragmented memories shuttle between the beautiful women in his life, including Ziyi Zhang and Gong Li. The ravishing images are tinged with regret and loss: no passion can assuage the jaded hero's solitude.
  • HOT DESIGNER GENES

    Along with hundreds of other strangely docile folks in white leisure outfits, Lincoln Six-Echo (Ewan McGregor) and Jordan Two-Delta (Scarlett Johansson) live in an underground, rigidly controlled environment in the not-too-distant future. They are told they are the survivors of an ecological disaster that has contaminated the world. A few lottery winners will get to leave these sterile quarters to live on an idyllic island. It's the dream they live for.And it's all a lie, as Lincoln and Jordan will eventually discover in Michael Bay's high-octane sci-fi thriller "The Island." There is no contamination. There is no island. What Lincoln and Jordan don't know--and here we come to a few spoilers, though nothing that isn't given away in trailers--is that they are not humans but clones, paid for by rich clients who want to extend their lives by having genetic doubles whose body parts can be harvested. Cursed with a curiosity they weren't programmed to have, Lincoln and Jordan escape to...
  • SNAP JUDGMENT: MOVIES

    Hustle & Flow Directed by Craig BrewerGritty on the outside, soft in the center, this tale of DJay (Terrence Howard), a pimp who finds redemption as a rapper, is another "ya gotta have a dream" crowd-pleaser. Brewer does better with the men (Anthony Anderson as a wanna-be producer, Ludacris as a sellout rap star) than with the broadly drawn, comic-pathetic hookers. But Howard redeems this lumpy fantasy. Soft-spoken and mysterious, he presides over the movie with a dangerous, feline grace.Dark Water Directed by Walter SallesThis dank, dark and disturbing psychological horror film is a remake of a Hideo Nakata chiller, but the film it most evokes is Roman Polanski's "Repulsion," another tale of mental instability and bad real estate. Divorced mom Jennifer Connelly, her daughter (Ariel Gade) and her daughter's "imaginary friend" move in to a leaky Roosevelt Island, N.Y., apartment, and the nightmares begin. Salles ("The Motorcycle Diaries") builds dread masterfully, but don't...
  • SNAP JUDGEMENT: MOVIES

    Hustle & Flow Directed by Craig BrewerGritty on the outside, soft in the center, this tale of DJay (Terrence Howard), a pimp who finds redemption as a rapper, is another "ya gotta have a dream" crowd-pleaser. Brewer does better with the men (Anthony Anderson as a wanna-be producer, Ludacris as a sellout rap star) than with the broadly drawn, comic-pathetic hookers. But Howard redeems this lumpy fantasy. Soft-spoken and mysterious, he presides over the movie with a dangerous, feline grace.
  • A LAST DANCE

    At the age of 86, decades after he'd announced he was done making movies, Ingmar Bergman--the brilliant, angst-ridden Swede who virtually defined and ruled the art film in the 1950s and '60s--has given us one more. It's likely that "Saraband," which stars Liv Ullmann and Erland Josephson as Marianne and Johan, the long-divorced couple from 1973's "Scenes From a Marriage," is Bergman's swan song. But it is anything but mellow or nostalgic. It's as urgent, personal and emotionally savage as anything he's done: a fierce and moving examination of familial and conjugal love--its limits, its frailty, its destructiveness, its necessity.The 63-year-old Marianne has not seen her ex-husband in 30 years when she impulsively seeks out the reclusive, caustic Johan, now 86, at his country home. But "Saraband" isn't really a sequel to the earlier film. Marianne becomes a witness to the family crisis that erupts after her arrival. This involves Henrik (Borje Ahlstedt), Johan's 61-year-old son from...
  • IS ANYBODY MAKING MOVIES WE'LL ACTUALLY WATCH IN 50 YEARS?

    She was "America's sweetheart." For 10 years in a row she appeared on the list of the top-10 Hollywood stars, and in 1943 she was the most popular star in the world, her pinup a keepsake accompanying American soldiers to war. But when was the last time you saw a Betty Grable movie? Can you, in fact, think of the name of a Betty Grable movie?Stardom is as unstable as an atom. Exposed to time, it mutates. If your name is Grable, it can be as ephemeral as a passing fashion. If your name is Gable, it's as permanent as marble. After the headlines and the gossip fade, there are only the movies you've left behind to argue your case. But which ones will last is not so easy to predict. Could anyone have guessed, when a transplanted working-class Brit started his career in light '30s comedies such as "Topper," that Cary Grant would leave more lasting movies behind than any other actor in history? His films weren't the prestige items that won best picture or earned him any acting prizes (those...
  • WITCHY WOMAN

    Instead of doing a straight- ahead remake of the popular ' 60s TV show "Bewitched," Nora Ephron came up with an ingenious spin: she's made a movie about other people making a new TV series of "Bewitched." The twist is, the producers unwittingly hire an actual witch to take the role of the nose-wiggling Samantha, the part originally played by Elizabeth Montgomery.Isabel (Nicole Kidman), the witch in question, has never acted in her life, which is just fine with her leading man, Jack Wyatt (Will Ferrell), a vain, down-on-his-luck movie star who hopes to resurrect his flagging career with the show, and wants all the close-ups. Isabel, on the other hand, is tired of getting anything or anybody she wants with a snap of the fingers. She wants to be needed for herself, without using magic, and she's naive enough to believe Jack's interest in her is genuine.This pop-Pirandellian concept, written by Ephron with her sister Delia, yields some healthy laughs. The comedy works best on the set of...
  • REVIEW: THIS MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR WILL SPIRIT YOU

    I can't imagine anyone who saw "Spirited Away"--the most wondrous and mysterious of animated films--wanting to miss "Howl's Moving Castle." Hayao Miyazaki seems to be one of those artists (and there aren't many) who just can't fail to make magic. His latest, which he freely adapted from a novel by Diana Wynne Jones, concerns an 18-year-old girl, Sophie (voiced by Emily Mortimer), who is transformed into a stooped 90-year-old (Jean Simmons) when the enormous, jealous and overdressed Witch of the Waste (Lauren Bacall) casts a spell on her. The witch once lost her heart to the vain, gorgeous and inscrutable wizard Howl (Christian Bale), who lives in that mobile, four-legged castle.I won't even try to describe the plot, which in characteristic Miyazaki fashion flies off in one unexpected direction after another. It involves Sophie's quest to break her spell, a war, a fire demon (a funny but distractingly familiar Billy Crystal) and questions of the heart. Miyazaki does not play by the...
  • SNAP JUDGMENT: MOVIES

    My Summer of Love Directed by Pawel PawlikowskiOn a sweltering Yorkshire day, two girls, one on horseback and the other pushing her scooter, meet in a field. Working-class Mona (Natalie Press), who lives above a pub with her born-again, ex-con brother Phil (Paddy Considine), is lonely, impulsive, smart but rough around the edges. The haughty, self-dramatizing Tamsin (Emily Blunt) is spending the summer in her family's Tudor manor. In Pawlikowski's seductive, quietly spellbinding "My Summer of Love," these two needy girls lose themselves in a love affair that has more to do with faith and yearning than reality. Press and Blunt are major discoveries: in this sly and wonderfully atmospheric gem, they conjure up the role-playing raptures of youth with perfect poetic pitch.
  • THE BRIDE WORE LITTLE

    Off-screen chemistry does not necessarily translate onto the screen. Kidman and Cruise? Ben and J. Lo? Enough said. As for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in "Mr. and Mrs. Smith," that's an entirely different story. From the moment their characters first meet--a chance encounter in appropriately sultry Bogota--the erotic sparks light up the screen. Sleek and graceful, two of a rarefied kind, they size each other up, come to the quick, obvious conclusion that they were made for each other, and head right to bed. "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" actually begins years after this lusty first round, when John and Jane Smith have settled into a dull, dissatisfied suburban marriage. Here they are, facing a marriage counselor, bickering about the drapes and wondering why their marriage has gone flat. If you have a hard time swallowing these impossibly glamorous movie stars as a bored, ordinary suburban couple, that's because they are nothing of the kind. In fact, both are highly paid assassins, and so...
  • AGAINST THE ROPES

    Ron Howard's depression-era boxing saga "Cinderella Man" has one thing in common with "Revenge of the Sith": just about everybody knows how the story will turn out. It's not that everyone's heard of James J. Braddock (Russell Crowe), the scrappy heavyweight from New Jersey whose rise and fall and rise made him a working-class hero in the depths of the Depression--the symbolic equivalent of a two-legged Seabiscuit. What we do all know is that Hollywood's not about to make a sports movie with this title that doesn't have a happy ending.Ultimately, it doesn't matter that we can see the third act coming, or that "Cinderella Man" doesn't have an original bone in its well-oiled body, or even that the first logy hour feels dangerously generic. Once Braddock--the rundown wreck of a boxer who's reduced to begging to support his family--begins his astonishingly unlikely comeback, Howard's movie skillfully delivers that primal, heart-pounding satisfaction that is the promise of all boxing...
  • TRANSITION

    Ismail Merchant, 68Renowned for producing lavish and literary period movies ("Howards End," "The Remains of the Day") that looked many times more expensive than they cost, the Bombay-born Merchant was a master at charming investors. His partnership with Oregon-born director James Ivory and German-born novelist Ruth Prawer Jhabvala--the principals in Merchant Ivory Productions--lasted 44 years. They struck gold with "A Room With a View." Under his shrewd financial guidance, Merchant Ivory became more than a company name: it was a genre unto itself.EDDIE ALBERT, 99An actor in movies and television for more than 50 years, Albert was best known for his role as the befuddled Oliver Douglas on "Green Acres."
  • THE FAMILY GOES NUCLEAR

    To those Jane Fonda fans who have been eagerly awaiting her return to the screen, my condolences. It's not that she's bad in "Monster-in-Law." She seems to be having a high old time as Viola Fields, an alcoholic TV diva. Viola's lost her job to a younger woman, and publicly lost her marbles attempting to strangle a Britney Spears look-alike on camera. Now she's about to lose her only son, Kevin (Michael Vartan), to marriage. This final indignity prompts Viola to go nuclear on her prospective daughter-in-law, Charlie (Jennifer Lopez). Fonda's formidable comic chops deserve far better than the clumsy and charmless comedy concocted by novice screenwriter Anya Kochoff and director Robert Luketic.The premise, though hardly fresh, has the makings of a ferocious black comedy. But "Monster-in-Law" is more a sour pastel. Torn between the desires to be nasty and nice, it achieves a mean-spirited blandness that makes neither psychological nor filmic sense. It's not Vartan's fault, but the...
  • THE END OF THE EMPIRE

    The Faithful (and quite a few of the Unfaithful) have been waiting a long time, enduring the bitter disappointment of "The Phantom Menace" and "Attack of the Clones," to get to this pivotal moment: to see how and why Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), the Chosen One, abandons his Jedi legacy, embraces the Dark Side and turns into Darth Vader.Almost 90 minutes of the sixth and concluding film--"Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith"--go by before Anakin's final metamorphosis actually begins. First up, we are served a fairly rousing if madly busy aerial battle in which Anakin and his mentor, Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), fight off crablike flying Droids in their attempt to rescue Supreme Chancellor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) from the clutches of General Grievous. Before the movie gets good--and it does, in the final 45 minutes, achieve a genuine dark power--we also have to put up with the usual Lucas liabilities: graceless dialogue, wooden acting, overcluttered compositions...
  • Blockbusters? Who Needs 'Em?

    The big summer movie season was supposed to begin with the fireworks of Ridley Scott's "Kingdom of Heaven," but the big bang turned out to be more of a whimper. An augury of things to come or just a bump in Hollywood's triumphant road? The studios are nervously awaiting the answer, because movie attendance has been slumping week after week. And why shouldn't it when Hollywood deliberately sticks to its dogs-only policy for the first three or four months of the year? Do they think moviegoers don't notice?But why should every movie have to be a blockbuster? As George Lucas's Death Star approaches, let's pause a moment and take a quick gander at some of the other offerings out there, from the mainstream appeal of "Kicking & Screaming" to the out-of-left-field delights of "Mad Hot Ballroom." It's hard to remember, but there was once a time when there was no such thing as "a summer movie." There were just movies that came out in summer, like any other.'Kingdom of Heaven'Borrowing...
  • Asking Why

    Before seeing "Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room," I'd read enough about the Enron scandals to know I'd never want to be seated at the same table as Ken Lay. Still, watching Alex Gibney's riveting documentary made my jaw drop and my hackles rise. If a novelist--Tom Wolfe, say--had made up this tale of greed, vanity, corruption and corporate machismo run amok, critics would have questioned its plausibility. Fiction, as Philip Roth pointed out many years ago, can't compete with the outrageousness of reality. And the Enron story, as writer/director Gibney tells it (based on the book of the same name by Fortune reporters Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind), calls into question not just a handful of rogue corporate outlaws but an entire business ethos. The movie makes clear that a deception this vast couldn't have succeeded if it weren't in everybody's interest--from Main Street to Wall Street to Washington--to look the other way.The crucial ruling that opened the door to Enron's smoke...
  • SHANGHAI SURPRISE

    Stephen Chow's "Kung Fu Hustle," which is set in a make-believe Shanghai of the '30s, tips its hat to the Hong Kong martial-arts movies of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan while zooming into the 21st century via "Matrix"-style digital effects. What this broadly comic adventure most resembles, however, is a "Road Runner" cartoon brought to life. When the actors chase each other down a road, they go into hyperdrive, traveling at the speed of sound as their unicycle legs leave behind tunnels of cartoon dust. As deliberately artificial as an old studio musical (and it even includes a big dance number), "Kung Fu Hustle" defies all laws of gravity in its pursuit of thrills and laughs--and it's so disarmingly eager to please that only a stone-faced kung fu purist could object.Chow, who wrote, directed and stars as a wanna-be gangster, is a huge comedy star in Asia, where "Kung Fu Hustle" is already a smash success. He's made more than 50 movies, though in the United States he's known for only one...
  • PARADISE RE-LOST

    When we first meet the title characters in Rebecca Miller's stunning "The Ballad of Jack and Rose"--the intense, rail-thin Jack (Miller's husband, Daniel Day-Lewis) and the ethereally beautiful young Rose (Camilla Belle)--their devotion to each other is as palpable as their relationship is ambiguous and unsettling. Are they father and daughter or lovers? The confusion is intentional. Soon we figure out that Jack is indeed the 16-year-old girl's dad, and we begin to understand their unusual intimacy. Rose, whose mother is dead, has been raised by her angrily idealistic father in the abandoned commune he founded in the early '70s on an island off the East Coast. A rabid environmentalist whose days are numbered by a bad heart, Jack has shielded Rose from the contaminations of "plastic," money-obsessed America. She's a true innocent, living in an isolated Eden of her father's creation. Like all paradises, this one is about to be lost. And like all innocents, she can be dangerous.Miller,...
  • SNAP JUDGMENT: MOVIES

    ConstantineGreat-looking gobbledygook, this feverish slice of supernatural Roman Catholic film noir sends demon buster Keanu Reeves--a chain-smoking psychic who can spot the half-breed demons and angels in our midst--on a mission to save the world, and his own soul, from Lucifer, who has broken his detente with God. Based on the "Hellblazer" graphic novels, this stylishly shot thriller is filled with all-that-money-can-buy special effects, but the razzle-dazzle grows wearisome. "Constantine" peaks early, then descends into portentous nonsense.Ong-Bak: The Thai WarriorIn total opposition to "Constantine"'s bag of CGI tricks is this Thai martial-arts action movie, in which every leap, spin and flying kick of its amazingly athletic star, Tony Jaa, is for real. No wires or camera tricks enhance the fight scenes and chases. Jaa plays a country boy who must reclaim his village's stolen Buddha head from Bangkok gangsters. The storytelling is cheesy, but action fans won't want to miss the...
  • THE SOLDIERS' STORY

    Gunner Palace," an intimate portrait of the soldiers serving in 2/3 Field Artillery in Baghdad, defies any expectations you bring to it. There are sights in Michael Tucker and Petra Epperlein's eye-opening documentary that will confirm and confound both right and left. Here are our boys, some fresh out of high school, trained to fight but suddenly put in the position of social workers: cradling babies, assisting at town meetings, tending the wounded. Here they are, long after Bush has appeared before the mission accomplished banner, roar-ing with hysterical laughter as they point out the deficiencies of their armored vehicle: "It'll probably slow down the shrapnel so that it stays in your body instead of going straight through." Who is friend and who is foe? Some local children follow the soldiers worshipfully, like a scene in a World War II movie. But, at night, adults throw stones at them as they patrol the streets. If the country dissolves into civil war, our soldiers know they...
  • TRAPPED IN A VIPERS' NEST

    It's impossible to turn your eyes away from Oliver Hirschbiegel's "Downfall," a meticulous, spellbinding, provocative depiction of the final days of the Third Reich. Based on historian Joachim Fest's "Inside Hitler's Bunker" and on the memoirs of Traudl Junge, Hitler's secretary (and subject of the recent documentary "Blind Spot"), this puts us on intimate terms with the fohrer (Bruno Ganz) and his inner circle--Goebbels, Himmler, Speer, Eva Braun--when the Russian Army is closing in. Inside the bunker, a raging, deluded Hitler issues insane military orders while his subordinates keep up the pretense of his sanity, or turn on each other like vipers. We witness a culture of death, in which Goebbels's wife thinks herself noble for poisoning her children rather than doom them to a world without National Socialism."Downfall" (written by producer Bernd Eichinger) observes but does not editorialize, noting how banality and monstrosity mingle in the corridors of unchecked power at the...
  • COURTSHIP FOR DUMMIES

    Will Smith has spent the better part of his extremely successful career charming the pants off movie audiences. Until "Hitch," however, he's never gotten to charm the pants off a leading lady. This is his first flat-out romantic comedy, and it will surprise no one to learn that he's a natural. Playing Alex (Hitch) Hitchens, a New York "date doctor" who teaches hapless, moonstruck men how to romance the women of their dreams, he breezes through the role with his characteristic mix of playful braggadocio and sweet self-deprecation. Alex doesn't practice what he preaches--hurt once, he won't allow himself to fall in love again. Andy Tennant's flimsy but generally likeable comedy is tailor-made for Smith's cheerfully suave comic style, and the movie goes out of its way to avoid any hint of sleaziness. As a dating consultant, Hitch won't take on any clients who are just after a quick lay; only true lovers need apply. His altruistic approach to his profession doesn't exactly jibe with his...
  • NEWSMAKERS

    Since you're such a high-tech guy, I'm forgoing the tape recorder for this talk and going digital.Oh, a recording stick? Cool. I'll talk a lot.The best part of "Aliens of the Deep" is watching how gee-whiz excited you get down there.Yeah--how I get, how the scientists get. I love taking these Ph.D.s out there and watching them reduced to 5-year-old kids.Are they easier to work with than, say, actors?[Laughs] Well, it's funny, there's some of the same concerns: How do I look? Am I doing something stupid? The thing is, science is important to every scientist. But maybe one in 10 can express why.Was "Aliens" harder to make than an action film?Yeah. First, you can't control the ocean. And there's no point writing a script because the ocean can't read it. You never know if your next dive's gonna be a bust or a jackpot.You're finally making a new Hollywood film?Yeah, it's called "Battle Angel," and it's a futuristic action movie adapted from a series of nine Japanese manga graphic novels....
  • Four Days in Utah

    Those days are long gone. Now the first thing I do is avoid Main Street, a furiously compacted avenue of traffic snarls, celebrity gawkers, marauding party kids who don't mind standing in freezing, roped-off lines to gain entry to overcrowded parties and corporate-sponsored way stations offering goodies to wannabe and actual movers and shakers in The Biz. This year it wasn't until my third day in Park City that I even set foot on Main Street. And I was sorry I had.But complaining about Sundance's fall from independent grace--if there ever was such a thing--is a cliche. Truth is, except for the traffic, it's not that hard to simply ignore the hype, the hustle and the innumerable parties and devote yourself to what Sundance was supposed to be all about: watching movies. Was Paris Hilton actually in Park City? Was that Osama bin Laden seen dancing the night away with Jessica Simpson? Could be, but I wasn't paying attention.This year, I could only stay at the festival for four days, so...
  • EVE OF SELF-DESTRUCTION

    Shortly after pretty, 23-year-old Sibel (Sibel Kekilli) meets dissolute, 40-year-old Cahit (Birol Unel) in a psychiatric ward, she asks him to marry her. They may be utter strangers, but they have several things in common. Both are Turkish Germans living in Hamburg, and both have recently attempted suicide--he by driving his car into a wall, she by ineptly slashing her wrists. Sibel needs a Turkish husband to escape her suffocatingly traditional Muslim family so she can pursue a full-throttle Western lifestyle of sex, drugs and rock and roll. Cahit, who has the reckless charisma of a wasted rock star, will be free to self- destruct his own way, with booze and drugs, but at least he'll have someone to clean up his slag heap of an apartment. As designs for living go, it could be worse.This is the setup of Fatih Akin's "Head-On," the extraordinary German film that just won the European best-film award over such highly touted movies as "Bad Education," "The Sea Inside" and "Vera Drake."...
  • OR NOT TO BE: ONE MAN'S FIGHT TO DIE

    Alejandro Amenabar's "The Sea Inside" arrives garlanded with festival prizes, Golden Globe nominations and strong indications that this Spanish entry is the movie to beat for the foreign-film Oscar. It's possible that Javier Bardem will get a best-actor nomination for his subtle, soulful performance as Ramon Sampedro, a bedridden quadriplegic who spent 28 years fighting in the courts for the right to die with dignity.Sampedro, whose case was a media sensation in Spain, was a husky sailor with a lust for life when he was crippled in a diving accident near his home in Galicia. Unable to use his body, he wrote poems, gave TV interviews and published a memoir, "Letters From Hell." The force of his wry, rational, seductive personality drew women from all around. In Amenabar's film, he is cared for by his sister-in-law (Mabel Rivera) and doted on by two women, one a stunning lawyer (Belen Rueda), also suffering from a degenerative disease, who falls in love with him while working to help...