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A Beautiful Mind: Charles Herman Was Not A Hallucination…

I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the Ron Howard film, A Beautiful Mind, but considering its success, both critically and financially, I think it’s a pretty safe bet that you have.  If you haven’t, please watch the film before continuing to read.

The popular interpretation of the storyline blurs the line between Nash’s actual work with the Pentagon and his hallucinations.  It also writes Charles Herman off as a hallucination.  It makes Nash out to be schizophrenic.  Even the director states this is the case but, either Ron Howard is lying and everyone else is wrong, or Ron Howard is a terrible storyteller.  Based on the critical reception, I’m going to have to guess the former.

Early in the film, Charles kicks a desk out of the window to get John Nash to hang up his work for a while and have some fun.  Clearly, everyone else saw the desk get kicked out the window.  Clearly, they didn’t blame Nash.  Ron Howard’s official statement is that Nash did it and projected it to his hallucination, but that isn’t a plausible storyline.  Even if it were completely plausible for those instances to be the case, the fact that the school didn’t hold John responsible for destruction of property is irrefutable evidence that Charles was a real character and the fact that a lot of characters couldn’t see him shows that either John or Charles (perhaps both) had superhuman capabilities or that the characters that couldn’t see Charles were the ones that were sick.

I think the most accurate interpretation of this film is a thinking man trapped in a feeling people’s world.  He’s charged to find codes in magazines that may or may not exist.  He’s questioning things that are while everyone else accuses him of being sick as a result.  And, being inspired by a true story about a man who was wrongfully accused of being sick, it makes a lot of sense.

So, then, why is Ron Howard lying and saying John Nash is the sick one?  Well, that’s open to speculation, but I would guess it’s either that the studio didn’t want him to be the sane one in a world of crazies and made him shut up, or because he was afraid of being called crazy in admitting it.  Either way, it’s clear that, in that film, Nash wasn’t the crazy one.  Most of the other characters were.

There are 33 Comments to "A Beautiful Mind: Charles Herman Was Not A Hallucination…"

  • daveNo Gravatar says:

    he would prob got a telling off for the table but as a genius you could do pretty much anything because if he makes a brake through the school get some of the glory its worth more than a table

  • danceNo Gravatar says:

    Okay this is absurd. Nash 100% made up the characters in his mind, because he has schizophrenia. The desk thrown out of the window was shown from Nash’s pov, then the panned down to show the people outside. All those people saw was a broken desk and window and Nash in front of the window with blood on his face. You can’t assume they saw Charles just because Nash sees him. And didn’t you watch later in the movie? Nash sees all of the characters in his mind at once in his house, then runs out to Alicia and says he knows they are not real now, because the little girl never grows up. This movie pans from 1947 to 1994 I think, and none of the fictional characters grow up, even though the real characters do. I get that its okay to have different opinions on something and disagree, but this is not the right place to do that. There is no real argument at all that Nash is right and EVERYONE ELSE is crazy.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      Is it absurd? Who got in trouble for kicking the desk out the window? Huh?
      Oh, right. Not Nash.

      He couldn’t have done it anyway. He was all the way across the room. He and Charles were the only two people in the room, and we’ve already established Nash couldn’t have done it. So, who did in your mind? A ghost?

      • jdcxNo Gravatar says:

        look, mate Charles isn’t real.
        as the audience sees the movie from Nash’s point of view, we believe that Charles is really kicking the desk out of the window. Charles, Marcee and Parcher are all part of John’s paranoia and they show different traits of it. if you notice carefully, Charles is everything Nash isn’t, he has confidence and needs of emotion, Marcees relationship with Nash is a desire of what he wants with his son and Parcher is his validation with the world. the only real character is Alicia as she manifests the truth and keeps him on his feet!!!

        • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

          And the desk kicked out the window? I’m sorry. You’re going to have to show me the scene where Nash is at least ACCUSED of kicking the desk out the window. But, it doesn’t exist. Why? Because of all the witnesses that saw Charles do it.

      • BobbyNo Gravatar says:

        This is completely idiotic. John Nash was officially diagnosed with Schizophrenia and yes, happened to beat it by himself. But he was clearly mentally ill at the time this movie was portrayed. He clearly made Charles up. lol @ u

        • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

          Then who kicked the desk out the window?

          This is funny. Everyone is claiming I’m wrong, but no one can tell me who kicked the desk out the window. Nobody can answer that question.

  • PaigeNo Gravatar says:

    Jesus fucking Christ you’re all retarded.

  • CelineNo Gravatar says:

    I have proof that Marcee (and in turn Charles) are hallucinations. (00:49:58)… Marcee runs around pigeons and they don’t fly away.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      Is that proof? I guess I’m not real either because I’ve done that myself.

      Also, an entire campus of people see Charles kick a desk out the window.

  • AliceWayneNo Gravatar says:

    So if I get this right you think that John Nash (in the movie and in real life) isn’t sick. If that was right, then why would he lie about being sick? He has always been upfront about his disorder in interviews. He is not being gaslighted as you say. During that time he was given shock therapy because that was common, now a days it is not used as much but it still an option for therapy and works. John Nash’s son was also diagnosed with schizophrenia which is an inherited disease. I understand all the points that you’ve made but they just don’t add up to him being psychologically abused. Nash was sick but pulled through his disorder and has made many great achievements.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      First of all, I’m talking about the John Nash in the film. The fictional John Nash as played by Russell Crowe. To present evidence about the real John Nash is irrelevant to my points. In Man On The Moon, Jim Carrey’s Andy Kaufman faked his death. The real Andy Kaufman may or may not have, but there’s no evidence to suggest he did.

      But, since you insist on bringing up the real John Nash, let’s talk about him. I don’t know him, so I can’t say with any authority anything besides the fact that he hated the film (because he has publicly stated this). But, based on my experience, and what I know about the mental health system, I can speculate he isn’t lying about being sick. He honestly believes he’s sick because the mental health industry convinced him he was. That’s what they do. Convince you you’re sick so they can sell you drugs. I’ve written plenty of articles on the mental health system, including an ongoing serial based on a true story.

      But, don’t take my word for any of this. As I said, I don’t know John Nash. I never met the man. I’ve never studied his life. And this film and a few quotes from articles are all I have to go on when making my speculation. And, we all know the film is fictionalised, just like every Hollywood biography.

  • FedeNo Gravatar says:

    Sure it’s plausible. Ever seen Fight Club? Near the end of the movie, Durden went on about how the two identities in the same body would switch between the roles of “actor” and “hallucination”, depending on the situation. Not to say Herman was plotting against Nash in A Beautiful Mind, but there was definitely some switching of roles going on, without Nash ever being aware such a thing happened. Your mind makes it real, as Morpheus put it in The Matrix.

    One thing I like to think about the movie in general is that the behaviour of the hallucinations is generated from Nash’s assumptions, and not because any part of Nash’s mind was aware that it was unreal. A car follows Nash to his drop spot? It must be the Soviets (even though it was Sol). Charles is suddenly in the same room as Rosen? Charles must’ve been conspiring, and a guilty look is shown on his face. The implant is gone? It must’ve dissolved. Only Nash can see Charles? The implant must’ve contained a cloaking serum. The explanations from Parcher only get weirder and weirder, but Nash manages to believe it every time – until he realises Marcee doesn’t age, of course.

    Also, Aaron, I find that to be a rather stretched-out theory. Jesus Christ and Mary? C.H. and three eights? Oh well, whatever.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      Nash wasn’t the only one who saw Charles. Everyone outside saw Charles kick that desk out the window.

      • FedeNo Gravatar says:

        As far as Nash knows. You must remember that it’s seen from his point of view.

        • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

          Not that scene. That scene was from the point of view of the people below, clearly seeing the desk kicked out the window.

          As far as I’m concerned, the purpose of that scene was to inform the audience that Charles was real so, when shit went down later, we could recall that scene and feel uneasy about what was happening to Nash. A foreshadow, if you will.

          • rigomNo Gravatar says:

            I would not comment but I was impressed by how uncapable you are of understanding the tricks of cinema and of concebing abstract thought. You believe in what you see even in cinema where all reality can be distorted.
            Charles is in fact only in Nash mind. Its irrelevant if you see it from above or bellow… That is a tecnique for the director to make you enter the character schizophrenia and then slap your mind whith a “WOW… THOSE WERE NOT REAL” .
            I gess there was no “WOW” for you.
            So you say there were no hallucination. Is this a sci fi movie for you? The girl doesn’t get old…
            So she is but not Charles… He interacts with her!! He appears from nothing…
            And the desk scene is a projection of Nash mind just like in “fight club” the fights of Tyler are a projection of the “Narrator” own fights.
            You get proof from the fact that Nash is not held responsible for the destruction of school property!!? Where is the movie scene where Charles is held responsible for that?
            And further in the movie… Nash gets obviously older and Charles don’t…
            You need to rethink you theories.

          • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

            The only other possible explanation is that Ron Howard is a terrible director. If Charles is a hallucination, then the film contradicts itself.

            This is what YOU’RE claiming. That Ron Howard can’t properly tell a story without contradicting himself. As much as I’d like to buy that, to believe that would mean I wasted two hours of my life watching a shit film. Unfortunately, there’s no way to interpret your other example, Fight Club, that actually works consistently, so I’m stuck with that one.

            Fun Fact: The real John Nash hated this film. Maybe you’re right. Maybe I should too.

          • tjNo Gravatar says:

            Nash literally yells from the window “don’t worry it’s mine.” not school properties. And the 2 people who witnessed it.. Did not seem to give a shit. This review or synapses of what you thought this movie is about is insane. Somehow you reviewed a movie and sounded like a conspiracy theorist.

          • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

            So, you’re saying there was no desk kicked out the window? That he imagined that scene entirely? Or that Ron Howard is a terrible filmmaker? Because I would buy the latter.

  • AaronNo Gravatar says:

    Oh yeah and the little girl who always followed Herman around was named Marcee. Strong similarity to the name Mary.

  • AaronNo Gravatar says:

    John Nash is “sick” but the character he sees, Charles Herman, is actually Jesus Christ. If you pay attention in the beginning of the movie, it’s one of the very first things that Herman actually says right before lifting his arms in a crucifix pose. If you also take the initial of his first name, Charles, and the initial of his last name, Herman, you get C. H. Numerologically speaking, each letter stands can be represented as a number and in this case C. H. equals the numbers 3 and 8. These numbers represent the Christian messiah because in Greek, Jesus name totaled 888 when all of the letters were added up. Three eights or 3, 8.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      Hmm… That’s an interesting interpretation. It certainly fits with the story (John Nash solving codes that don’t officially exist and that everyone else calls paranoid). I like that it takes getting into the mindset of the character and solving those non-existent codes. But, alas I don’t think Ron Howard would be smart enough to think it up.

      And, even if he were, why would Jesus kick a desk out the window? I suppose he chased a bunch of pigs off a cliff, so it’s not too much of a stretch…

  • Joey BadaNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with the first comment.

  • SmarterThanYouNo Gravatar says:

    Jesus you’re a fucking idiot.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      What a wise and carefully thought out rebuttal. And, so politely presented too. I simply must convert to your religion.

    • Joey BadaNo Gravatar says:

      Amen to THAT, bro! Joey Bada agrees .. what a fucking stunad —> (Italian for “Stupid Idiot”).

      • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

        I like the part how you and your friend resort to petty insults and completely ignore all of my points, including the damning piece of evidence that dozens of people witnessed the allegedly imaginary Charles kicking the desk out the window.

  • mNo Gravatar says:

    Honey, “A Beautiful Mind” is based on the biography of John Nash, a man that was truely sick. The movie ignored so reasonable things because the director didn’t want us to know Charles is an hallucination. John Nash, the person was sick and those people were his mind’s creation. The only thing that really isn’t true is that he worked on what got him his nobel prize while being sick and that they found out he was sick in his 20s.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      John Nash was the victim, in the film and in real life. If a woman got gang raped, why would you call her a slut? Blaming the victim is a horrible thing to do…

      Gaslighting someone just for the excuse to call them sick is about one of the most evil things you can do to a person.

      The man was drugged, beaten, locked up, strapped to beds, and God knows what else they did in those places in his day that are illegal today. Then, he gets out and has to take it from society too (“That happened to you because you’re sick” which is like saying to a gang-raped woman, “That happened to you because you’re a slut”). And, through all of that, he still had the time to give so much to the world.

      You had better get on your knees and thank whatever god you believe in that this man didn’t just mass murder everybody. It’s what society deserved for treating him this way, for continuing to treat him this way. But, instead, he does good things for a people who don’t deserve a man like him among them.

      Think about that next time you call him sick. He’s more sane than you.

  • Willowdean KennedyNo Gravatar says:

    Just watched the movie. Was disturbing that the hallucinations characters popped out of the blue. The car racing experience, being shot at, etc., with characters names. Now I know I,m comfortably crazy.

    • The CeejNo Gravatar says:

      When I wrote this, I didn’t know the word for a form of psychological abuse. It’s called gaslighting. That’s what Nash’s family and other close acquaintances were doing to him.

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