Study Guide

A Beautiful Mind Scenes 31-35

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Scenes 31-35

Scenes 31-35

Scene 31

  • John is at Harvard presenting at a conference, and Charles comes with his niece to watch.
  • John's pretty addled, though, and the lecture doesn't really go that well…especially when he sees some suspicious-looking men enter at the back.
  • John runs out of the lecture hall as the men chase him.
  • Finally, they corner him. The man leading them claims he's a psychiatrist named Dr. Rosen.
  • John pretends he's going to play ball and go quietly with the dude, but then starts fighting it.
  • A crowd of people, including Charles, watch as the men try to subdue John.
  • The doctor gives John a sedative and the men take him away in a car. What is even happening? Has John just been kidnapped by Russian operatives? Is the movie over?

Scene 32

  • John wakes up in Dr. Rosen's office in a psychiatric hospital. He's in jammies and restraints.
  • John tries to escape but falls over in his chair (remember: restraints).
  • While he's writhing on the floor, John sees Charles sitting there watching him. Charles? Why isn't he helping John?
  • He starts apologizing to Charles (since he thinks he's gotten Charles captured by the Russians as well).
  • The doctor looks concerned, though, and asks who John sees. Wait, what? The doctor can't see Charles?
  • John still isn't buying that they are at a hospital and screams for someone to call the Department of Defense.

Scene 33

  • The doctor is talking to Alicia and explaining that John has schizophrenia. Wait, what?
  • It looks like John has been having hallucinations for some time. And apparently, Charles the roommate is one of them.
  • Looks like the whole "spy for the Russians" thing might be as well. Consider our minds blown—did the whole first half of the movie just not happen?
  • At least we know Alicia is real. Right?
  • The doctor wants Alicia to help him get some details about John's work so they can get to the bottom of how much of what he's saying is real, and how much isn't.

Scene 34

  • Alicia forces her way into John's office and grills John's colleagues to get to the bottom of all his claims about super-secret classified work.
  • Then, she goes to the place where John had been dropping files, and it looks totally abandoned.
  • She finds the letterbox and forces it open. And behold, all the reports. Wow, it really was all in his head.

Scene 35

  • Now Alicia is visiting John at the mental hospital, and they're both super emotional.
  • He thinks he's comforting her, and he wants to confess everything about his work. Which is heartbreaking for her, since she knows he's been hallucinating.
  • She cuts him off and drops the bomb: there's no William Parcher, and the "mail drop" he's been using is filled with his unopened envelopes. None of it was real. The truth is that he's sick.
  • You can imagine how well that goes over. John storms out.

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