At the movie's start, Dr. Gerald Klooster's wife Ruth is watching TV, and seeing people describe a certain act as murder. Then we go back five years.
Dr. Klooster is still able to enjoy being with his family. Two years later, he is making mistakes and having trouble with his memory. He may have to give up his practice, but the worst thing is that his mother had Alzheimer's and he hated watching her go downhill. He does not want the same thing to happen to him. In fact, he tells his wife he doesn't want to live if he gets to the point where he would have to go into a nursing home. Ruth reluctantly agrees, but later his children Kristen, Chip, Craig and Curt believe it was her idea to end his life. One of the sons even believes his father must be protected from his mother. The court fights over Dr. Klooster's situation gain national attention in the news media.
Richard Kiley does an outstanding job as Dr. Klooster, effectively showing the man when his mind is still relatively clear, as he tries to stay positive and push onward with life but ends up going through the various worries and emotions. Despite his determination, Dr. Klooster eventually begins to deteriorate, and Kiley is quite convincing as a man with the mind of a child, still making every effort to live and act normally. Eva Marie Saint also does a fine job.
I wish I could say the other actors in this movie were half as good as the stars. Margaret Colin does stand out as daughter Kristen. I often found the various events surrounding the older couple's decisions and the children's fights to be unpleasant and even fluff.
Overall, though, the scenes involving Dr. Klooster and Ruth were very good.
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