The 2007 film Lars and the Real Girl serves as a fine introduction to the enduring insights of British psychologist D.W. Winnicott, in this review by psychoanalytic psychologist Margaret Jordan. A PSYCHOANALYTIC LOOK AT LARS AND THE REAL GIRLMargaret Jordan, PhD | Visit her website at www.drmargaretjordan.comThe following comments were made in a post-screening discussion of the film Lars and the Real Girl in a program sponsored by The Jung Center of Houston and the Houston-Galveston Psychoanalytic Society on August 27, 2009. The film is the story of the way a troubled young man, Lars, used a life-sized female doll for healing, with the help of a local doctor and the people in his small town. I&rsquo;d like to begin our discussion of this evening&rsquo;s film by asking, &ldquo;What do we know about Lars?&rdquo;, and then we&rsquo;ll move on to &ldquo;Why is he like this?&rdquo; and &ldquo;What made it possible for him to get better?&rdquo; I&rsquo;ll propose some answers to these questions with a little help from psychoanalysis, and the British analyst Donald Winnicott, in particular. Lars is a 27-year-old man who lives in a community that is a lot like what I imagine Garrison Keillor&rsquo;s Lake Wobegon to be. People of hardy Scandinavian stock and non-Scandinavians alike brave the cold winter, do their work, attend the Lutheran church, and more or less treat each other decently. We know that Lars&rsquo; mother died at the time of his birth, and that his father then slipped into what sounds like a state of depression that lasted until his death a few years ago. We don&rsquo;t know who took care of Lars or how he was raised, but we know that his older brothe
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