Characters on the Couch
Film & Television Blog

by Dr. Sandra Cohen

Jason Segel Gets Inside
Foster Wallace’s Quiet Torment

Depression is outwardly a quiet torment. Inside it’s an almost constant implosion of self-deprecating self-doubt. That’s what we witness in director James Ponsoldt’s The End of the Tour – wrapped around David Foster Wallace like his famous bandana. Woven all-too-frequently into the substance of his conversation with David Lipsky: the ravages of a cruelly oppressive…

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How A Psychoanalyst Looks At
Her “Freudian Fate” & Bulimia

Asif Kapadia’s deeply truthful, Amy, makes something very clear. Although Amy Winehouse predicted fame would “drive her mad,” it was more her psychological troubles that set her on a fatal downward spiral. The lyrics to What Is It About Men – “my Freudian fate. History repeats itself. It fails to die,” only touch the surface…

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If You’re Terrified To Perform
There’s An Answer

Joan Acocella’s comprehensive New Yorker piece (August 3, 2015) “I Can’t Go On!” concludes: “There seems to be no cure for stage fright.” That’s not true. For stage fright to be cured or at the very least tolerably minimized, a deeply personal understanding must be found for each person’s fears. I’m a psychoanalyst who treats…

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