“Do You Remember Love?” and “The Notebook”?:

Aundra Willis Carrasco
4 min readJul 1, 2024

Alzheimer’s Disease: The Longest Goodbye

JoAnne Woodward in Do You Remember Love? (1985), and Gena Rowlands in The Notebook (2004).

Our friend Dylan Thomas once told us: ‘Do not go gentle into that good night’. And my friends, I have tried to rage against the dying of the light. But now my rage is long since spent. Not squandered. Not even proudly laid upon the bar. But given up grudgingly to a dark, unseen creditor who drags me into the darkness for debts I do not remember…”

~ From a speech written by the lead character, Barbara Wyatt Hollis, in the award-winning 1985 television movie “Do You Remember Love?” starring JoAnne Woodward.

The recent revelation that two of the greatest actresses of my generation, JoAnne Woodward and Gena Rowlands, both 94 years old now, are victims of Alzheimer’s Disease was heartbreaking. In an additional bit of irony, they both had roles in movies in which they portrayed women stricken with the dreaded disease. Remarkably, both women had deeply personal connections to the subject matter covered in these two movies. In 1985, during promotional interviews for her film, JoAnne Woodward revealed that she was doing a one-woman juggling act and had to move Heaven and Earth to get her movie made. At the time, she also happened to be caring for her own mother, who had Alzheimer’s Disease. And years later, in 2022, it was revealed in the six-part docuseries…