Movie Review: “Concussion” (Peter Landesman, UK/Australia/USA 2015)

This is the basic premise of Concussion: an immigrant doctor uncovers a terrible brain injury being caused by football and works to bring it to light. That premise could be used to make films about a number of things.

It could be a film about how terrible Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is, by using Omalu’s discovery as merely a means of entry into the story of Dave Duerson, Mike Webster, or any of a hundred other players. If what you want people to get from the film is the horror of CTE, showing us how Mike Webster decides to distract himself from the pain by pulling out his own teeth and then supergluing them back in is far more powerful than just having Omalu say that he’s been doing so. Duerson’s change from vicious defender of “the Shield” to broken man who commits suicide and leaves behind a note asking for his brain to be studied for the very effects he had denied just a few years before is powerful even in the abbreviated form presented in the final film where we see nothing of what he has experienced, so imagine how it would work in an entire film. Continue reading

Advertisements