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As Good As It Gets

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Cast
Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Greg Kinnear, Cuba Gooding Jr., Skeet Ulrich, Shirley Knight, Yeardley Smith, Lupe Ontiveros
Released
1997
Spoiler alert
Blog entry

Although Melvin gives Carol (who expresses strong feelings about her HMO) credit for helping him make a decision to start medication for his OCD, the most effective therapy here comes from the developing connections among this unlikely set of New Yorkers. His misanthropy, obnoxious attitude and verbal abuses probably would be explained in real life, not by OCD, but by a (narcissistic?) personality disorder.

Novelist Melvin executes his ritual of repetitive door locking and counting as he switches lights on and off. He drops his gloves in the trash. He takes a bar of soap from a large and neatly stacked supply in the medicine cabinet (which contains nothing else), washes his hands in scalding water and discards the soap. Misophobia? (0:03)

Carefully stacked records and compact disks line the walls of Melvin’s apartment. (0:05)

Melvin tells artist neighbor Simon, “Never interrupt me... the stench that you’re gonna faint.” (0:07)

Melvin tells Simon's art dealer Frank, “Don’t touch!” (0:09)

Melvin carefully avoids cracks as he walks down the sidewalk avoiding contact with others: “Don’t touch!” (0:10)

Melvin drops his own plastic utensils from a plastic bag and makes an insensitive comment to waitress Carol.

Carol: “You crazy...” (0:13)

Carol asks Melvin, referring to the restaurant eating utensils, “Afraid it isn’t clean?” (0:22)

Frank tells Melvin, “”Because I never felt as crazy as I do right now.” (0:27)

Frank’s door locking ritual. (0:28, 0:37)

Walking with Melvin, Simon’s dog Verdell avoids the cracks too. (0:34)

Melvin dons gloves before picking up Verdell. (0:35)

Melvin avoids cracks in the sidewalk.
Sign: “FIFTH AVENUE PSYCHIATRIC GROUP.” (0:40)

Melvin asks his psychiatrist, “Dr. Green, how can you diagnose someone as an obsessive compulsive disorder and then act as if I had some choice about barging in?” (0:41)

Melvin avoids touching a taxi with his bare hands. (0:48)

Carol tells Dr. Betts, “These are the receipts for all the prescriptions...”
Carol, referring to the doctors and skin tests for her son Spence, “They said the plan didn’t cover it... HMO...” (0:53)

Melvin tells neighbor Nora, “Sell crazy someplace else. We’re all stocked up here.” (0:57)

Carol tells her mother Beverly, referring to Melvin, “This lets a crazy man into our lives.” (0:58)

Melvin tells Simon, “You’re a disgrace to depression.” (0:59)

Melvin executes his ritual of tapping the floor with his toes before donning his slippers. (1:07)

Melvin tells Simon, “I haven’t been sleeping.” (1:09)

Beverly tells Carol, “I think you ought to have Mr. Udall send you over a psychiatrist.”
Carol: “I gotta finish this letter, or I’ll go nuts.”
”It’s very weird feeling that stupid panic thing inside me all the time.” (1:10)

Melvin organizes items for packing his suitcase. (1:20)

Simon tells Carol and Melvin what his father did when he was a child: “And he started hitting me, and he beat me unconscious.” (1:28)

Simon tells Carol, “I’m nervous.” (1:31)

Jack buys a new jacket and necktie rather than wear one that someone else might have contaminated. (1:35)

Melvin tells Carol about “My doctor, a shrink that I used to go to all the time. He says that in fifty or sixty percent of the cases a pill really helps. I hate pills. Very dangerous thing pills. Hate. I’m using the word hate here about pills. Hate... the next morning I started taking the pills.” (1:39)

Carol asks Simon, “What are you thinking about?”
Simon: “How to die, mostly.” (1:45)

Melvin tells the bartender, “No offense, but a moron pushing the last legal drug.” (1:49)

Simon tells Melvin, “I’m a little bit nervous.” (1:52)

Melvin recoils when Simon touches him. (1:53)

Simon tells Carol by telephone, “ ... practically fainted when...”
Carol tells Melvin, ”See right there I don’t know whether you’re being cute or crazy now.” (1:59)

Melvin realizes for the first time “I forgot to lock the door.” (2:04)

Carol: “Why can’t I just have a normal boyfriend... who doesn’t go nuts on me?” (2:06)