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Psychological diagnosis

  • Word Count: 944
  • Approx Pages: 4
  • Has Bibliography

Psychological diagnosis of Jack Nicholson's character in "As Good As It
Jack Nicholson's character "Melvin Udall" in the film "As Good As It
Gets" meets the criteria outlined in the DSM-IV for obsessive-compulsive
personality disorder (OCD). The character of Melvin demonstrates the high
needs for order, perfection, and control seen in patients with OCD. Much
of his time is dominated by getting prepared and organized. Furthermore,
his over-attention to what seem to most to be minor details prevents Melvin
from necessarily seeing things from a larger perspective. Also, Melvin
does not have any meaningful personal relationships, which is also
characteristic of people with OCD. He wants everyone to cater to his way
of doing things, and doesn't allow for the give and take necessary for
friendships. Melvin appears stiff and impossible to others, unable to feel
any emotions or empathy. Overall he seems not to be happy.
Melvin's extreme need for order, perfection and obsessive control is
evident through his varied compulsive behaviors. When Melvin enters his
apartment, he closes the door and proceeds to turn each lock on his door
five times. This is obviously an irrational behavior, but Melvin feels it
is necessary to heed to this routine each and every time his door is opened
and then closed. Also, while walking down the street as well as within
buildings, Melvin avoids stepping on cracks in the sidewalk or between
tiles at all costs. Melvin eats at the same restaurant, at the same table,
with the same waitress every day. He also orders the exact same meal, and
becomes very irate if anything in this context does not go according to his
routine. Melvin also has an unreasonable obsession with cleanliness. Each
time he washes his hands he uses a brand new bar of soap. In fact, he uses
a new bar of soap for not only each washing but for each latherin...

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