Mask is really a heartbreaking story when you watch it. Rocky was born with craniodiaphysial dysplasia, which is a massive calcium buildup in the skull that usually causes death in childhood when it does occur. Thankfully for Rocky he has a very big support group in the form the biker gang to which his mother and her boyfriend belong. No one judges him within the gang, but the same can’t be said of the outside world. Rocky knows he’s different and does what he can to live with it, though it’s rather hard since most people, not understanding his condition, tend to view him as a freak and a monster. It’s one of Cher’s most powerful movies as well as one of the most tragic.
But there are a few moments within the movie that remind us what it’s like to be human.
10. The movie was based on a true story.
There was such a person as Rocky Dennis, and his mother Rusty.
9. The real Rocky Dennis was not buried.
His body was donated to science so that doctors and physicians could hopefully gain a better understanding of the genetic disorder he suffered from.
8. An old man in the Dennis’ neighborhood saw Eric Stoltz and thought he was the real Rocky Dennis.
This shows how accepting some people really were of Rocky. Cher and Eric Stoltz didn’t have the heart to correct him.
7. Cher wanted Val Kilmer to play as Gar.
She and Kilmer were dating at this time but it was decided that he looked too young to play the part of Gar.
6. Eric Stoltz had to present ID just to get into the set.
He spent so much time under heavy makeup that a lot of people didn’t even recognize him. The cast and crew didn’t even know who he was until it was revealed.
5. The real Rusty Dennis had two sons.
Her other son, who was older, died at the of 32 after complications involving AIDS that he received from a blood transfusion.
4. The real Rocky Dennis was legally blind.
In the film he tries to educate a blind girl about the world around her by telling her of colors and what he sees, but in reality his own vision wasn’t that great.
3. Rob Lowe was almost cast as Rocky Dennis.
There were just too many scheduling conflicts that had to be dealt with and Lowe had to bow out before he was ever cast.
2. Cher and the director didn’t get along.
She was still new to acting and was said to be very difficult to work with since she would break character quite often. It’s said that their fights would often get very loud and very heated.
1. The real Rusty passed away from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.
It would seem that she lived the way she wanted right up until the end and was every bit the person that she was portrayed as in the film.
For many the movie was a tearjerker, but for others it was something that reminded them of the differences between people and why it’s important not to judge based on what you see on the outside.
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