Assisted Living (2005)
A janitor in a nursing home spends his days getting high and enjoying the surrealism of resident life. When he develops an unlikely friendship with an elderly woman whose mind is faltering, his compassion drives him to knowingly jeopardize his job.
as Mrs. Pearlman
as Mrs. Pearlman
as Nancy Jo
as Nanci Jo
as Malerie Skelley
as Hance Purcell
as Kathy Hogan
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Critic Reviews for Assisted Living
Sensitively considers the potential for liberation of the mind from the shackles of the aging body, no matter how deteriorated that physical human essence might be.
There is a certain meditative grace to the cinematography here, but after a while, well, I was just plain bored.
It's a slight movie, setting a poignant scene but not quite filling out even its running time. Still, I like its wry sense of humor and compassionate heart.
There is a tender, poignant story in here... worthy of a great 20-minute short, not enough to fill writer-director Elliot Greenebaum's rambling mock-documentary.
Watching the movie is like conducting a conversation with a loved one stricken by Alzheimer's: It's at once moving and maddening.
The whimsy Greenebaum wants to construct can't match the terminal sadness that naturally takes over the film.
Becomes an affecting story about the bond that develops between shiftless Todd and Mrs. Pearlman.
Assisted Living is a remarkably moving look at the prisons in our midst that most of us manage to ignore until we need them.
Maggie Riley, a former circus performer who suffered two strokes and a heart attack during the filming of this movie, is a revelation in this role [Mrs. Pearlman].
A blend of fact and fiction that feels like a breath of fresh air in a medium that too often trivializes the hard realities of age.
Authentically unconventional -- opening in the form of an almost convincing mock documentary -- but it gradually evolves into something more deeply affecting.
It's a sensitive portrayal of a jolly, caring environment that unwittingly converts its charges into helpless infants.
Viewers who complain about the subject being "depressing" and "uncomfortable" are either missing the point, or simply haven't been to a nursing home in a really long time.
Works more than it doesn't, though it's easy to conclude that the film exploits some of the elderly in the movie.
Assisted Living is both funny and sad and, in the end, it is truly heartwarming.
Says more about aging in America...than all the sweet but false fables Hollywood has manufactured about the elderly. It's worth seeking out.
Todd and Mrs. Pearlman are interesting characters you want to spend time with and get to know thanks to the fine performances by Michael Bonsignore and Maggie Riley.
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