Free films give images of aging

Pierce County Aging and Disability Resources is starting a new series of films—all of them screened free of charge for audiences in Tacoma–in July dealing with issues related to aging.

First up, on July 13, is “About Schmidt,” starring Jack Nicholson. The central character, Warren Schmidt, is retiring from his job with a life insurance company in Omaha, Neb. After a retirement dinner and the sudden death of his wife, Schmidt finds it hard to adjust to his new life, feeling completely useless. He is overcome buy loneliness. He decides to take a journey alone in his new RV and begins to question what he has accomplished in life, lamenting that he will soon be dead, that his life has made no difference to anyone, and that eventually it will be as if he never existed.

“What we see in this film are themes that many older adults experience,” said Aaron Van Valkenburg, manager of Aging and Disability Resources, a program of Pierce County government. “Whether leaving the workforce, dealing with personal losses or experiencing changing health conditions, older adults begin to question life’s meaning and examine their own years.”

“About Schmidt” (rated R for language and brief nudity) and the rest of the screenings will be held at the Grand Cinema in Tacoma, located at 606 S. Fawcett Ave. All films will begin at 10:45 a.m., after the doors open at 10:30.  Tickets are free but must be obtained in advance online at or by calling the Aging and Disability Resource Center at 253-798-4600. More information about the films is also available at the center.

Other films tentatively scheduled for the series are “The Age of Adaline,” “I’ll See You in My Dreams,” “5 Flights Up,” “Driving Miss Daisy,” “The Upside,” “Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” “Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” “On Golden Pond,” and “Harold and Maude.”