Clint, Congratulations on Your "Baby" BUT..
With tonight's Acadamy Awards winning by Clint's "Million Dollar Baby" for best actress, supporting actor,director and the best movie, Clint Eastwood deserves a round of applause and congratulations. BUT there is an issue to be settled. And that is the ending of the film. This evening I wrote to Clint my suggestions in the Comment section of my last post regarding a better ending which would promote better ethics understanding by everyone. However, I thought instead of my ideas being buried there, I would put a clone if it here as another posting so if Clint was around he could more readily access it. :-) ..Maurice.
First I would like to congratulate Clint on the Oscar winnings of his picture tonight. I think it was a very good movie.. but you know.. it could have been excellent and contributed constructively to the ethical education of the public and avoided the bad press of the "right to lifers" if the last part of the movie was handled differently.
Clint, may I talk to you directly here? I have thought of the best ending for your movie which would have kept the quality of the ending in keeping with the great quality of the first parts.
Keep the traumatic quadriplegia in the scenario. I think it is a realistic and emotionally important contrast to all the previous progressively upbeat winning. But.. first do away with the need for amputation without disclosing the patient's truely informed consent. Also the pictured lesion looked trivial and didn't appear, as I recall, in an anatomic area subjected to pressure.
More importantly, change the ending to a detailing of a conflict in decision-making by the patient herself.
Have her discuss the issue with her doctor. Have him be supportive and talk to her about the ethics of autonomous request for termination of life support but not directing her one way or another. Or maybe have him express to others how he feels about the position he is in... possibly having to turn off the ventilator. Have a physical rehabilitation representative present to give the patient the rehab view of the situation. Clint, you can give her loving support but you are uncertain whether she should leave you. Are you sure what is in her best interest? And how would your own interest enter into how you would talk to her about her decision? And then end the film with all the uncertainty of what she will finally decide and let the audience think it over as they leave the theater. This kind of indecisive ending might be the best mental exercise for the audience to think about the ethics and I don't think would impair the uplifting story preceeding it.
I leave it to my visitors to suggest their own endings. ..Maurice.