Monday, May 13, 2013

The Soloist


        In the movie The Soloist, Jaime Fox plays a homeless street musician who suffers from schizophrenia. Throughout the film, Fox does an outstanding job displaying the classic signs of schizophrenia. List the signs and symptoms of schizophrenia displayed and give examples from the movie to illustrate each term. Also, do some research on mental illness and homeless. Link your article in post and include statistics and pertinent information in your post. Due Friday 11:59pm No late post will be excepted. 


  1. Schizophrenia is a mental illness that affects about 1% of Americans. The symptoms of schizophrenia are usually divided into three categories: positive, negative, and cognitive. Positive symptoms reflect a change in behavior or thoughts, including hallucinations, delusions, thought disorders, and disorganized behavior. A hallucination happens when a person sees or hears things that are really not there. The most common hallucination is hearing voices. A delusion is a belief that is based on a mistaken perception. A thought disorder happens when a person has trouble keeping track of their thoughts and conversations, causing them to jumble their words, which is sometimes called “word salad.” Disorganized behavior is shown when a person behaves in a confused and unpredictable way, such as wearing unusual clothes or becoming easily agitated. Negative symptoms may include: losing interest and motivation in normal daily activities, having trouble concentrating, neglecting personal hygiene, not showing emotion, and withdrawing socially. Cognitive symptoms are problems with thought processes that affect how a person can do normal daily tasks, including having trouble paying attention, remembering things, and processing information.

    In the movie, “The Soloist,” Jamie Fox plays a character named Nathaniel Ayers who suffers from schizophrenia. Ayers shows many of these symptoms of schizophrenia in the movie. He displays disorganized behavior by dressing weird in unmatched clothes. He shows thought disorders by frequently mumbling his words in a word salad and using loosely connected words in his sentences. He has a hard time staying on one topic. He has hallucinations and hears hundreds of different voices in his head. Ayers has a hard time talking with other people and is socially awkward. He seems to enjoy being alone. It takes awhile for him to connect with Lopez, the journalist who found Ayers playing a violin. When Ayers plays his violin, it is like he is in a different world. He blocks out all other distractions and he becomes calm, happy, and absorbed by the music. Lopez recognizes that Ayers is a talented musician and tries to be his friend and help him with his mental illness and his homelessness.

    Statistics show a relationship between homelessness and mental illness. 20 to 25% of the homeless population in the United States suffers from mental illness, compared to 6% of other Americans. 80% of homeless people with mental illness who are given the chance to live in supportive housing stay there for at least one year, which indicates supportive housing is important in helping homeless people with mental illness.

  2. In the movie, The Soloist, Jaime Fox's character, Nathaniel Ayers suffers from schizophrenic disorder. He does a great job showing the classic signs of schizophrenia. When we first see Nathaniel, he talks in a word salad and just rambles on from one topic to another. We also see Nathaniel as a child and see how he often hallucinates. He see's a truck on fire that is driving by his house and he becomes scared and paranoid. When Nathaniel gets into college, he hears voices and becomes extremely paranoid thinking that everyone is watching him. These are called delusions and are a clear sign of schizophrenia. Later on in the movie, the journalist gives Nathaniel a cello and says that he has to leave it at this really crappy part of town with a bunch of other homeless people. The cello will be taken care of by workers at the rehab center near the homeless people. Nathaniel gets really paranoid by his cello being near all those homeless people and doesn't want to part with it.

    The symptoms of schizophrenia usually start to occur between 18 and 31. This distracts victims from continuing their education or succeeding in their career. It is very difficult for a schizophrenic person to accomplish their goals or make a living which can lead to homelessness. Twenty to twenty-five percent of homeless people in the U.S. have a mental disorder. Six percent of people with schizophrenia are homeless. This shows that there is a significant link between homelessness and mental disorders.

  3. dont count my blog late i had trouble getting home tonight!!! PLEASE :) :) :)

  4. In the Movie "The Soloist" a homeless man with schizophrenia named Nathaniel Ayers gets interviewed by a reporter. we know he has schizophrenia because he shows a lot of its symptoms. When the Nathaniel talks to the reporter he is constantly talking moving from one subject to another without hesitation. Another symptom is when he was a child and was practicing his instrument in the basement he looks out the window and sees a burning car drive by his house. of course there wasn't a real burning car, it was a hallucination. Nathaniel is also very paranoid about his cart and all his belonging in the cart. The last symptom we see is when he is at Julliard and he has to stop practice with his orchestra because he kept hearing voices in his head. Sadly at least 1/3 of all homeless people are mentally ill. If they are not stable enough to hold down a job they won't have any income coming in to pay for things such as a house, clothes, or even food, causing them to be homeless. Also most homeless people get into drugs and when a schizophrenic person uses drugs it usually makes his or her symptoms worse.

  5. my link

  6. In the movie “The Soloist” Nathaniel Anthony Ayers Junior starts hearing voices and having hallucinations and delusions as a young kid. He is strange and inward from birth as he chooses to live in the basement and always be very close to his instruments. Even as an adult Nathaniel shows a childlike ability to love something completely, his music. Even when his family is throwing a party right above him, he remains in the basement to practice his music. Nathaniel's hallucinations include a sincere voice with a message that others can hear his thoughts. Nathaniel’s fingers move gracefully over the strings of his instrument showing his pure talent even with the psychological problems that he has. When he is playing for fun he seems to be at peace with himself and with the world. However, when he is playing with the rest of the instruments and directed by the instructor, he seems to become paranoid and starts thinking that the others can hear his thoughts.
    Schizophrenia is one of the most disabling of all of the psychiatric disorders and affects over 2 million people in this country. About 15% of them are either on the streets or in prison. The first symptoms occur in men in their late teens and early 20s, but occur much later in women. People with this illness are sometimes found to become terrified of what happens in their minds. Schizophrenia is a brain disorder that is based in genetics, but nobody is really sure what the exact cause really is.
    “According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 20 to 25% of the homeless population in the United States suffers from some form of severe mental illness. Mental illness was the third largest cause of homelessness for single adults. For homeless families, mental illness was mentioned by 12% of cities as one of the top 3 causes of homelessness.” Serious mental illnesses disrupt people’s ability to carry out essential aspects of daily life, such as self care, household management, and prevent people from forming and maintaining stable relationships. This often results in pushing away caregivers, family, and friends who may be the force keeping that person from becoming homeless. Even if homeless individuals with mental illnesses are provided with housing, they are unlikely to achieve residential stability and remain off the streets unless they have access to continued treatment and services.

  7. The movie "The Soloist" is about a schizophrenic man named Nathaniel Ayers Junior. He is a street musician who is also homeless. Many signs of his schizophrenia are seen throughout the movie. His crazy style of dressing is one of the major ones. Also he often talks to himself and uses jumbled up words that do not make sense. Nathaniel is significant because despite his mental problems, he is still a musical genius. He is still able to posses this talent with an instrument that is very broken. Steve Lopez is a writer who at first was just looking for something to fill up his space. He comes across Nathaniel and is inspired. After meeting Nathaniel and getting to know him on a deeper level, it became more than just a story. It turned into a relationship that changed both of their lives.

    20 to 25% of the homeless people in the United States also have a form of mental illness. These mental illnesses are very difficult to deal with and can often bring people to just give up. Also treatment is expensive which can also lead to homelessness. In some cases these people have no one to invest their time and care in them and living on the streets seems like the only option. The stresses of the disorder sometimes becomes too much for people. These people learn to push away others and have no social skills. When offered oppriunities to get their lives back on track, they often turn them down. The mental disorder consumes some people and it takes over their lives. They do not know how to handle the stress and hardships that come along with the disorder. There are many organizations such as PATH and ARRA to offer solutions to the issue of homelessness.

  8. In the movie "The soloist", Jamie Fox plays a schizophrenic named Nathaniel Ayers. When reported by actor Robert downey junior he shows a few signs and symptoms of a schizophrenic. When nathaniel talks he would jump from subject to subject mixing his words and sentences together like a word salad. He was also a recluse who sat in his basement for his entire childhood playing the cello. Even when the family would be at the house having a party or anything around him went on he stayed downstairs playing. When it was time for him to go to bed he would even play the cello on his arms. HIs first sign was when he looked out of his window one night and saw a burning car running across the street. When nathaniel got older his next signs for his disorder were shown through the imaginary voices he hears telling him that others can read his thoughts. His hallucinations of the voices in his head were his downfall. He became involved in an orchestra but as he played the voices were overbearing and caused him to play poorly.
    "Approximately 20-25% of homeless population suffers from a mental illness". People with a mental illness are more likely to stay homeless for a longer period of time then those without. They are not as attached to family members, they have a tough time keeping a job due to the mental impairments, and most likely don't stay in the best physical health. Most people suffering from a mental disorder do not need to be hospitalized in a mental institution ad required by law. ON 5-7% of those suffering a disorder are actually institutionalized. Patients with mental disorders are found to have a close link to those with an addictive illness so it is is easier to pair them together instead of having separate plans. As far as housing and support plans go. They seem to do well in communities as long as they are provided with the support necessary to their health.