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Sat, Aug 24, 2019 9:37 AM

Live Poll: Favorite Film Character With a Disabilty (SEPTEMBER)

September is Muscular Dystrophy Awareness Month. To remember and celebrate those among us who are challenged by various kinds of disabilities, let's celebrate movie characters who remind us of the difficulties experienced by, and accomplishments of, disabled individuals. Below are several characters who live with one or more disabilities; which one is your favorite?

Listhttps://www.imdb.com/list/ls048970373/
Poll: https://www.imdb.com/poll/SqM75f_mxYs/

*Please feel free to suggest characters. I'm starting with characters from film but will consider characters from TV or streamed series depending on how the list develops. Thank you!*

Responses

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125.9K Points

a year ago

I think you should make two separate polls, one about physical disabilities and one about mental disabilities, just stick to movies because there are enough examples to make a list of 20-and-more in both cases, if you check the list of Oscar-nominated performances ever since it started, I think every 1-2 year, there's a performance with a handicap... just for blindness, you have Audrey Hepburn in A Cry in the Dark, Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman, Jamie Foxx in Ray

There's also Holly Hunter in The Piano, Harold Russell in The Best Years of Our Lives (a real-life disabled man playing a disabled vet, in 1946!), Sally Hawkins in The Shape of Water... etc.

The "trick" is with mental disabilities, I'm not sure about Forrest Gump, he's got a low IQ but he's more of a child-like person, now, if we count that sort of mental "disorders", maybe Gena Rowlands in a Woman Under the Influence would be a good add.

Handicap is a very broad theme, believe me :) I think you should consider splitting in two parts (handicap/mental, Oscar-nom/others, men/women etc.)


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Thank you, ElMo, for all the good suggestions. I'll add them after I get some much overdue sleep. :)

Forrest Gump actually has a few disabilities: he does have the unusually low IQ like you mentioned (and possibly some mild autism?) but he also has a physical disability as a child. 

I probably will separate it into two lists if there are too many to fit on one list but I'm not sure with what demarcation yet. This is very personal for me so whatever I do, I'm sure I'll deliberate over it a good bit. Thanks for the response and input. 

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125.9K Points

I was thinking of adult Gump :)

Good luck with this poll, personal polls generally make for the best

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4.6K Points

Triage starring Christopher lee and Ionside with Raymond Burr. Rear Window James Stewart.

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Thanks for the suggestions, Mrs. Gail. I'm not including Jimmy Stewart's character because he's only temporarily disabled. I found no such 'Triage' title under titles nor in Raymond Burr's acting credits. 

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108.5K Points

a year ago

I have two old suggestions about disabled characters who kick butt, feel free to use any of these you feel fits your needs. Plus, there is a pretty comprehensive film listing of movies featuring characters with disabilities to pull from that features a wide range of disabilities.


Ray Fisher Justice League
Victor Stone aka Cyborg, Multiple

James McAvoy X-Men: Apocalypse
Professor Charles Xavier aka Professor X, Paraplegic

Ben Affleck Daredevil
Matt Murdock aka Daredevil, Blind


Mark Hamill Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
Luke Skywalker, Hand Amputee

Charlize Theron Mad Max: Fury Road
Imperator Furiosa, Arm Amputee

Robert Downey Jr. Captain America: Civil War
Iron Man aka Iron Man, Heart Condition

Donnie Yen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Chirrut Îmwe, Blind

Rose McGowan Planet Terror
Cherry Darling, Leg Amputee

DreamWorks Dragons
Toothless, Tail Fin Amputee and Hiccup, Foot Amputee

Kurt Russell Escape from New York
Snake Plissken, Blind - One Eye

Transformers
Bumblebee, Mute

Spencer Tracy Bad Day at Black Rock
John J. Macreedy, Arm Disabled

Ziyi Zhang House of Flying Daggers
Xiao Mei, Blind

Peter Weller RoboCop
RoboCop, Multiple Bionic Replacements

Samuel L. Jackson Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Nick Fury, Blind - One Eye

Art Parkinson Kubo and the Two Strings
Kubo, Blind - One Eye

Michelle Rodriguez Machete Kills
Luz, Blindness

Cuba Gooding Jr. Men of Honor
Chief Carl Brashear, Leg Amputee

AnnaSophia Robb Soul Surfer
Bethany Hamilton, Arm Amputee

Al Pacino Scent of a Woman
Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade, Blind

Stephen Lang Don't Breathe
The Blind Man, Blind

Mark Ruffalo The Avengers
Bruce Banner aka The Hulk, Anger Management

Denzel Washington The Book of Eli
Eli, Blind ?

Liam Neeson Darkman
Dr. Peyton Westlake aka Darkman, Burns and No Sense of Touch

Lynn-Holly Johnson, Robby Benson Ice Castles
Alexis Winston, Blind Figure Skater

Matthew Wood Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith
General Grievous, 80% Prosthetic

James Earl Jones Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith
Darth Vader, Multiple Limb Amputee, Spinal Cord Damage, Respiratory Issues

Sofia Boutella Kingsman: The Secret Service
Gazelle, Dual Foot Amputee

Joseph Wiseman Dr. No
Dr. Julius No, Double Hand Amputee

Kenneth Branagh Wild Wild West
Dr. Miguelito Loveless, Double Leg Amputee

Rhys Ifans The Amazing Spider-Man
Dr. Curt Connors akaLizard, Arm Amputee

Jason Isaacs Peter Pan
Captain Hook, Hand Amputee

Tim Curry Muppet Treasure Island
Long John Silver, Leg Amputee

Sebastian Stan Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Winter Soldier aka Winter Soldier, Arm Amputee

Daryl Hannah Kill Bill: Vol. 1
Elle Driver aka California Mountain Snake, Blind - One Eye

Geoffrey Rush Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
Captain Hector Barbossa, Leg Amputee

Alan Tuskes, Samuel L. Jackson Unbreakable
Elijah Price aka Mr. Glass, Brittle Bone Disease

Julius Harris Live and Let Die
Tee Hee, Arm Amputee

Lionel Barrymore It's a Wonderful Life
Mr. Potter, Wheelchair Bound

Paul Reubens Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Amilyn, Arm Amputee Vampire

Vin Diesel Riddick
Richard B. Riddick, Partial Blindness

Jan Decleir The Memory of a Killer
Angelo Ledda, Alzheimer Stricken Hit Man

Bane v Superman: The Movie
Bane, Pain Management Issues

Johnny Depp Once Upon a Time in Mexico
Sands, Blinded Hit Man

Sacha Baron Cohen Hugo
Station Inspector, Leg Injury

Christopher Walken Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead
The Man with the Plan, Quadriplegic

Elisabeth Shue Molly
Molly McKay Autism

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Bruce Campbell Army of Darkness
Ashley 'Ash' J. Williams, Hand Amputee

FYC
 
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of great characters with disabilities. I suggest limiting it along the lines of movie (vs. television), fictional (vs. real-life), physical (vs. psychological) or another combination. I think each combination will still yield 25 or more strong answer options. I think casting too wide a net will leave too many glaring characters omissions.

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Thanks for all of the suggestions, Urb. There are a few that I will add, like Pacino's character in 'Scent of a Woman.' I don't want to add any superheroes or supervillians, or anyone along those lines, however, because I want this to reflect the reality of disabilities. I also don't want to add any portrayals of disabled people as freakish, such as in 'Planet Terror.' Thank you, again, though, for all of the characters and I'm certainly going to add a few. 

I think I may add some parameters like 10,000 minimum votes and 6.5 IMDb score, which would eliminate 'Ice Castles' but certainly include most of your other suggestions of more realistic characters. : )

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411.7K Points

a year ago

rubyfruit76,

My vote:
Stephen Hawking in 'The Theory of Everything' (Based on a true story)

= = =

For you consideration:
Gary Cooper as Lou Gehrig in The Pride of the Yankees (1942)

Lou Gehrig also had Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), which is also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lou_Gehrig

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0035211/mediaviewer/rm2867988480
Gary Cooper in The Pride of the Yankees 1942

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0035211/mediaviewer/rm201197568
Gary Cooper in The Pride of the Yankees 1942

= = =

Bill Murray as FDR in Hyde Park on Hudson (2012)

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1477855/mediaviewer/rm1366338304
Bill Murray and Laura Linney in Hyde Park on Hudson 2012

Unfortunately, none of the images crop well. Likewise, there may be a better film about FDR.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franklin_D._Roosevelt

In 1921, Roosevelt contracted a paralytic illness, believed at the time to be polio, and his legs became permanently paralyzed. While attempting to recover from his condition, Roosevelt founded the treatment center in Warm Springs, Georgia, for people with poliomyelitis. ... Roosevelt's leadership in the March of Dimes is one reason he is commemorated on the American dime.[360]

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'All added and perfect for the spirit of the poll; thank you much!

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a year ago

Thanks, Dan. I can't believe I forgot about them. They're both great suggestions. I'll add them very soon. ALS fits especially well since the Muscular Dystrophy Association includes ALS in the research they support and offer service to people with ALS: although it's not a form of muscular dystrophy, the MDA also works against neurological diseases and muscle diseases generally. I would guess, therefore, polio as well. 

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Ruby,

The March of Dimes predates the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). Once the Salk and Sabin vaccines became widely available, the original reason for the March of Dimes polio became rare in the United States. The March of Dimes changed their focus to prevention of birth defects.

MDA took on the mission of neuro-muscular diseases in addition to their core mission to finding a cure for muscular dystropy.

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Oh yeah, I remember the March of Dimes, I know that they are still very active but I remember my school doing fundraising for them when I was little. That was post-polio, of course, and I don't think I ever knew that polio was their original mission. That's interesting. Jonas Salk worked at the University of Pittsburgh, where I teach, while working on vaccines, generally, and a vaccine for polio, specifically. One of the main buildings of the medical school and University of Pittsburgh Medical Center is named after him and you see his name and photo all over the campus. 

Since neither muscular dystrophy or ALS are birth defects, though, I don't believe that March of Dimes do much, if any, work for those. I had two cousins who had cerebral palsy, though, and I know they were helped by the March of Dimes quite a bit. I have a special place in my heart for MDA. My mother, for one, had muscular dystrophy and died from it. In some ways, she was lucky because the onset of most of her symptoms came relatively late but once the symptoms became more obviously muscular and she was diagnosed, it disabled her, progressively, and caused her a lot of pain. I was never much of fan of Jerry Lewis until my mom was diagnosed with MD. MDA got so much exposure because of him and now they don't get as much attention or support. I owe him a debt of gratitude. 

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123.6K Points

a year ago

Back when Arnold was only the star of Pumping Iron (well, there was Hercules in New York, but nobody wants to bring that up.  ;)  And yes, I promise this is relevant to the poll sugg): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymowfNeEvAI

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Oh wow, I never saw that ad. How great!  Thank you, so much, for sharing that. It's quite a powerful ad, I think. 

At first, before I knew what it was about, it really made me nostalgiac and laugh because, when I was a small child, one of my brothers adored Arnold, as much for his body building as his movies. My brother seemed big to me but he was a skinny little 14 year old when he started to lift weights and I remember he had posters of Arnold all over the place and he had a mirror that he used to practice body building poses, lol. Those memories are good blackmail material that I sometimes resort to with him. :-D

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Glad to make you happy.  :)

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You really did. That ad is very compelling, too.

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a year ago

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a year ago

Ruby,

Please correct the spelling of disability in your list.
Favorite Film Character With a Disabilty

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'Good eye: Thank you, Dan!

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a year ago



AnnaSophia Robb Soul Surfer
Bethany Hamilton, Arm Amputee
(based on a true story) option

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Cuba Gooding Jr. Men of Honor
Chief Carl Brashear, Leg Amputee
(based on a true story) option

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DJ Qualls Legit
Billy Nugent, Muscular Dystrophy

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I added Bethany and Chief Brashear. I'll add Billy to the TV list. Thank you, Urb!

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a year ago

Sugg: 
The kid from Silver Bullet.

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If there's room, I'll add him but, as of right now,  I'm using parameters of at least 10,000 votes, which 'Silver Bullet' has, and a score of at least 6.5, which it doesn't. Thank you for the suggestion, though, and I'll keep him in mind if it's possible to relax the parameters and still keep the list manageable. 

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Don't sweat it; Silver Bullet's not my favorite or anything.  :)

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112.8K Points

a year ago

You got great characters in good movies on your list. It's a good list.
Maybe I'd suggest some. I guess I have some in mind like 'The Diving Bell' and the Butterfly. ;)
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0401383/
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1866249/
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1675434/

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Hi Breu, these two are already on the list. Jean-Dominique from 'Diving Bell' is also already on. You're so right: these characters definitely belong on the list. :)