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Veteran actress Lainey Allen (Chappell) is tired of being sidelined for younger talent on the soap she has starred in for twenty years. Coupled with finding it harder to retain her lines, she decides not to renew her contract, and she and her publicist and partner, Eva Morales (Leccia), move to a beach house overlooking the ocean on the Central California coast. The move highlights some small changes in Lainey's personality - mild depression that Eva puts down to leaving the show. But when Lainey starts to forget more than can be attributed to stress, Eva insists on a visit to the doctor. A Million Happy Nows chronicles Lainey and Eva's changing relationship as they struggle to deal with the diagnosis of Lainey's Early Onset Alzheimer's, the prospect of an indomitable woman's future of dependence and her single support system - the woman who was once in awe of her, became everything to her, and will now look after her.Written by
A Million Happy Nows (2017) was directed by Albert Alarr. It stars Crystal Chappell as Lainey Allen, a talented soap opera star who has just won an Emmy. Jessica Leccia portrays Lainey's partner, Eva Morales. The two women are deeply in love.
At the start of the movie, it becomes clear that Lainey has memory problems. In fact, she has early-onset Alzheimer's disease. (This is an unusual type of Alzheimer's disease. It affects people below the age of 65, and is sometimes hereditary. Lainey's disease is hereditary, so she is familiar with the symptoms.)
The plot of the film isn't whether or not Lainey has Alzheimer's disease. We learn her diagnosis very early in the movie. The plot is how Lainey and Eva deal with the situation. What keeps their love strong under the harsh reality of the disease? What happens as the disease progresses? Who is willing to help them, who is not? It's a hard movie to watch, but I found it realistic and believable.
We saw this film at Rochester's excellent Little Theatre. It was shown as part of the wonderful Image Out, Rochester's LGBT Film Festival. (I thought it tied for best lesbian film with Princess Cyd, another wonderful film.) What I particularly liked about the movie was that it concentrated on the problem that this couple must face. Yes, it was a lesbian couple, but it was still a couple. We appear to have reached a point where--at least in some situations--being lesbian is not considered an obstacle to acceptance. Lainey and Eva have a problem, but it's not because they're lesbians.
This movie will work well on the small screen, although some of the beautiful coastal scenery will be lost. You don't want to miss this movie. Seek it out and watch it.
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