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  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: Early in the film, John is talking to Helinger and sees someone receiving pens to commemorate the Achievement of a Lifetime. Near the end of the film, he suddenly is presented with them.
    • And the speech devoted to his wife.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Very deliberately averted. The real Nash never started taking medication for his psychosis again, but towards the end of the film Nash makes a reference to taking "the newer medications". Ron Howard didn't want to send the message that someone with severe mental illness ought to simply learn to put up with it, or attempt to overcome it through sheer willpower.
  • Fridge Horror: Think about the premise for a bit... How can you be sure those you know are real?
  • It Was His Sled: Aside from the Trope Namer, this may be the most spoiled movie ever made.
    • The fact Nash was a paranoid schizophrenic was part of the trailers, but the surprise is discovering certain characters to be imaginary.
  • Tear Jerker: John's goodbye to his hallucinated 'boss', best friend, and niece.
  • The Woobie: John Nash.
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