With Breast Cancer Awareness month we have been learning about a lot of companies and institutions that have been raising awareness, funds and research to help find a cure. With 1 in 8 women currently diagnosed with cancer, this devastating disease has most likely impacted the lives of someone we know through various experiences of diagnosis, treatment, recovery and in some instances death. I recently had the opportunity to see a fictionalized, yet incredibly poignant depiction of cancer through an interconnected story arc in the Lifetime Original Movie, Five. The film, directed by Jennifer Aniston, Alicia Keys, Demi Moore, Independent Spirit Award winner Patty Jenkins and Penelope Spheeris, depicts the impact of breast cancer through five powerful short stories that will leave you moved and shaken by its poignant characters.
While watching the film I was really struck by the characters as they are searching for strength, comfort, medical breakthroughs and, ultimately, a cure. The first story, Charlotte directed by Demi Moore, is seen through the eyes of a little girl named Pearl whose mother has breast cancer. Set in the 1960s, cancer struck Pearl’s mom where everyone in the family tried to cover up the ‘sickness’ by not telling Pearl what was happening behind the closed door where her mother is spending her last days. The young Pearl played by Ava Acres beautifully captured the raw emotion while also showing that she was mature beyond her years. Other shorts, like Mia, directed by Jennifer Aniston depicts a woman played by the brilliant Patricia Clarkson whose diagnosis is seen in a backwards time line – starting with her experiencing joy on her wedding day and then going backwards in time to show her diagnosis in learning that she had stage 4 breast cancer to how her husband left her along the way to a living funeral where she speaks candidly to the people in her life revealing her disappoint in certain friends as well as affairs. Another story, Cheyenne directed by Penelope Spheeris, gripped me. I didn’t necessarily think this was the best acted short but I was moved (to tears) by the reveal of Cheyenne’s double mastectomy by her seemingly superficial husband showing how they will have to redefine their relationship, as well as who Cheyenne is beyond the physical. To add some humor to the mix, there was the story Lilli directed by Alicia Keys. In this story, we see a power woman played by Rosario Dawson who has it all – a maid, an assistant, a secretary, a successful career as a lawyer and breast cancer. She also has a strong mother who is wrapped up in her own world played by the vivacious Jenifer Lewis and an older sister played by Tracy Ellis Ross whose family dynamic was as real as it gets. I loved how all of the characters were so clearly defined with their unique personalities and how eventually Lilli learns how to ask for help as well as how to accept their faults (and her own) and let them into her life. The final story, Pearl directed by Patty Jenkins, follows Jeannie Tripplehorn as the grown-up Pearl who is now a doctor who finds out that she has breast cancer herself. Through her story we see her still trying to understand her own mother’s death where she pleads with her father for answers who just can’t talk it about. At the heart of this story, we see how conflicted Pearl is when she wants to tell her own daughter about her cancer and eventually how Pearl shares with her daughter a necklace her own mother gave her – a full circle moment that was a beautiful connection between mother and daughter.
The impact of these characters and their experiences with both breast cancer and their friends and families showed a raw, heart breaking and humorous side the many side of the disease. The heart of the film is its touching and emotional connection of how each of the characters deals with their diagnosis and eventually learns to live differently when faced with a new set of challenges. You will feel for them through their journey and I think that is what makes Five so poignant – it is a film that will resonate with you and make you think about your own life. While the story is about cancer and how to live after its diagnosis it is also about life and how to live each day in the most honest, full and truthful way possible. It is about family, appreciation and love and not letting anything – even cancer- stand in the way of how you live your lives. Real, poignant and emotionally raw – Five is one film that will leave you shaken, moved and touched for a long time.
Additionally, Jennifer Aniston partnered with Ford Warriors in Pink and designed a special edition tee featuring a drawing of a man on the moon that ties in with the first short Charlotte. ‘My T-shirt stands for a future in which we no longer have to live in fear of cancer,’ Aniston said. ‘I’ve had an amazing journey working on Five, and it was only fitting I was able to bring that energy into the design of this Ford Warriors in Pink T-shirt. I encourage all of you to take a stand against breast cancer and join the brave men and women who are battling the disease as we speak.‘
For every purchase 100% of the profits will go to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Available exclusively at www.fordcares.com, each t-shirt is designed with symbols such as courage, hope, love, and commitment, all of which represent the greatest strengths of Warriors in the fight against breast cancer. These fashionable items not only look good but do good.
Five will be showing on Lifetime on Mon Oct 10 at 9 PM, Tue Oct 11 at 1 AM and Sat Oct 15 at 8 PM.
For additional information about Warriors in Pink,
please visit: http://www.ford.com/warriorsinpink/
For additional informative about Five,
Momtrends was not paid for this post. We did receive the movie to preview and Warriors in Pink accessories.