What to say about the movie Concussion? Obviously, with Will Smith as the lead, the movie is great. And the story about Dr. Bennet Omalu is not only an interesting one, it’s also a story about an immigrant who stood up to the NFL — both impressive and inspirational.
But it was hard for me to watch this movie, having to flinch every time I saw two football players collide with each other. My god, what a violent and painful sport. As described in the movie, these players are not thought of as people, but commodities that must be on the field no matter what. Alec Baldwin, who plays an NFL doctor in the movie, lists all the drugs given to players to make sure they perform… makes me want to start playing football, just so I can get some pain medication.
I guess football fans will be afraid to watch this movie, and that’s a shame. Concussion is one of those movies I think everyone should watch, because brain injuries don’t happen to just football players. In fact, many domestic violence victims also suffer from head injuries. And I think it’s important for people to know that depression can be a sign of brain trauma.
Sure, I know how popular this game is, and how most fans don’t want to know the truth. But these players are not robots or supernatural — they are people, just like you and me.
Dr. Bennet Omalu: Over 90% of NFL players have some degree of CTE
(9/14/2009) Bennet Omalu, Concussions, and the NFL: How One Doctor Changed Football Forever
How does a guy go from four Super Bowl rings to…pissing in his own oven and squirting Super Glue on his rotting teeth? Mike Webster bought himself a Taser gun, used that on himself to treat his back pain, would zap himself into unconsciousness just to get some sleep. Mike Webster lost all his money, or maybe gave it away. He forgot. A lot of lawsuits. Mike Webster forgot how to eat, too. Soon Mike Webster was homeless, living in a truck, one of its windows replaced with a garbage bag and tape…
And yet still the NFL fought. They took the case to federal court. They said Mike Webster—who had endured probably 25,000 violent collisions during his career and now was living on Pringles and Little Debbie pecan rolls, who was occasionally catatonic, in a fetal position for days—they said Mike Webster didn’t qualify for full disability…