Tag Archives: ALS

Oscar-winner Hillary Swank stars in a moving drama

Classical pianist  Kate (Hilary Swank) is afflicted with ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Her husband Evan (Josh Duhamel) tries to find someone to take care of his wife. Bec (Emmy Rossum) – a college student – applies for the job despite being unsuited for the position. Kate sees something special in Bec and wants to have her as her caregiver to help her with everyday things like taking a shower. Kate and Bec help each other to live their lives and find their way in the world.

Directed by theater veteran George C. Wolfe (Angels in America), the film explores how two strangers can bring out the best in each other even in the midst of trials and tribulations.

You’re Not You details how human emotions can play a big part is keeping the audience sit through the whole film. Swank, as expected, delivers an incredibly moving performance as she portrays a gravely ill woman. It takes an intelligent actor to essay such role without making it look rehearsed. Her subtle  yet highly effective acting glorifies people who have the same condition yet show positive outlook in life including making complex decisions on how they would like to live their remaining days.

As the whole story revolves on Kate’s worsening condition, it also segues into relationship issues brought about by lack of real communication: her growing estrangement from her friends; her husband’s unfaithful outings; and her mother’s lack of emotional support in her current situation.


Bec, as an untamed soul, finds her purpose in this emotional journey. From a struggling musician, the college drop out becomes a self-thought ALS patient advocate. From a stubborn party owl, her character turned into a devoted companion assuming responsibilities beyond the job of a caregiver. Emmy Rossum’s plausible character development  is a delight to the audience.

Subplots  and support characters perfectly fit into the story without them taking the limelight from the real purpose of the film.

You’re Not You is distributed and released in the Philippines by Octoarts Films International and will hit movie theaters nationwide starting November 26.


The ALS ice bucket challenge has recently taken social media by storm.Hollywood celebrities, local stars, and even ordinary people literally pitched in to support and fund research on the condition that is also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Their social media videos may seem amusing, but there is a deeper reason why they subjected themselves to that bucket of ice-cold water.

Ice Bucket Challenge

This viral campaign started because not much is known about ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, which affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. As with its most famous patient, American baseball player Lou Gehrig, people who are diagnosed with this condition degenerate as movement are slowly affected until the later stages that result in total paralysis. People who were otherwise healthy in their younger years start to lose control over the use of their muscles, and soon are unable to speak, walk, and feed themselves.

Man suffering from ALS

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s disease, and rarely Charcot disease—is a neurodegenerative disorder with various causes. The term motor neurone disease (MND) is sometimes used interchangeably with ALS while others use it to refer to a group of similar conditions that include ALS. ALS is characterised by muscle spasticity, rapidly progressive weakness due to muscle wasting. This results in difficulty speaking, swallowing, and breathing. The disease usually starts around the age of 60, except in cases that are directly inherited when the usual age of onset is around 50.
About 5 to 10% of cases are directly inherited from a person’s parents. ALS is the most common of the five types of motor neuron disease.
The average survival from onset to death is three to four years. Only 4% survive longer than 10 years, although rare cases survive 50 years or more. Most die from respiratory failure. In much of the world rates of ALS are unknown. In Europe the disease affects about 2.2 people per 100,000 per year. In the United States, more than 5,600 are diagnosed every year, and up to 30,000 Americans are currently affected. ALS is responsible for 2 deaths per 100,000 people per year.
Descriptions of the disease date back to at least 1824 by Charles Bell. In 1869 the connection between the symptoms and the underlying neurological problems were first described by Jean-Martin Charcot who in 1874 began using the term amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. It became well known in the United States when it affected a famous baseball player by the name of Lou Gehrig, and later when the ice bucket challenge became popular in 2014.

Who is Lou Gehrig?
Baseball player

Lou Gehrig

1. Henry Louis “Lou” or “Buster” Gehrig was an American baseball first baseman who played 17 seasons in Major League Baseball for the New York Yankees. Using number 4 as his mark, Lou plays First baseman and pinch hitter
2. Born: June 19, 1903, Yorkville, New York City, New York, United States
3. Died: June 2, 1941, Riverdale, New York City, New York, United States and buried in Kensico Cemetery, New York.
4. Spouse: Eleanor Gehrig (m. 1933–1941)