I can’t remember where I heard about Behind the Mask, but it must have been one of those “If you like this, then you’ll like that…” lists. Frankly, it is one of the best recommendations I’ve ever received.
Behind the Mask is a true story of a doctor who works in a center for the developmentally disabled. Although Dr. Shushan started out his career as a caring physician, he is now nothing more than a paper pusher who has lost sight of his purpose for living and is out of touch with his wife and son. A heart attack at work and subsequent rescue by one of the troubled young employees begins a series of events that turns his life around.
This made-for-TV movie will amaze and delight you. The script is excellent (and surprisingly clean). The acting is stellar. Robert Shushan is played by Donald Sutherland (who endeared himself to me with his role in the 2006 Pride and Prejudice). Matthew Fox is the custodial worker, James Jones (who has endeared himself to many in his role on the TV show “Lost”.) It’s a movie that manages to be both serious (though not depressing), and satisfying without being sticky sweet. The footage of the actual people involved in the story added to its impact.
Netflix has it, but you can buy it used at Amazon for less than the price of a movie ticket. Make sure you get the right one because there is an R-rated movie by the same name. When we finished watching the DVD, my college-age son asked if he could keep it to show to all of his friends. You’ll probably want to do the same.