So many films these days are CGI-oriented or rely on action-packed plots. Still Alice isn't dependent on special effects, and bypasses high-action scenes entirely, but it is still riveting. It follows Alice (Julianne Moore) as she discovers she has early onset Alzheimer's disease.
The film offers a heart-rending insight into the irreversible path her life takes as the disease takes hold. Told from her perspective, the gaps between scenes can be weeks or months - we're never sure - reflecting the frustrating confusion of the disease.
Alice's memories, mental capabilities and even physical abilities deteriorate as her condition progresses, and her loving husband (Alec Baldwin) and daughters Lydia (Kirsten Stewart) and Anna (Kate Bosworth) find themselves pushed to their limits as they struggle to come to terms with the situation.
Baldwin delivers a moving performance, highlighting the sadness of losing a person you love while they are right there with you. Stewart's character feels a little forced, although this becomes less painful in the second half as her role expands.
But it is Moore who steals the show, playing the articulate Alice as convincingly as the Alice who has regressed to a child-like state of dependency.
Still Alice delivers on all levels, and is definitely worth a watch.