The Buzz About Fragile Storm?

What Is All The Buzz About The Film Fragile Storm?

Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio

051817 ASR Graphic Dawn fields Fragile Storm

Thursday May 18th at 1pm, Dawn Fields is the director, producer, editor and co-writer of the multiple award-winning short film Fragile Storm, starring Lance Henriksen, a heartbreaking caregiver story.  We will discuss what all the buzz has been and the impact the film has had on its audience.

Dawn is currently focused on promoting the short film, which is now available for free at and she is also in development on her first feature film.

Contact Information For Dawn Field:


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6 Replies to “The Buzz About Fragile Storm?”

  1. Hi Lori,

    Here¹s my take on Fragile Storm which I think does more damage than good: es-dementia-care-stigma-and-myths/

    The post includes quotes from Dr. Bill Thomas and Kate Swaffer.

    I had reached out to Dawn Fields; we exchanged a few emails; unfortunately, the conversation ended abruptly without being very productive.



    Susan Macaulay

    Dementia care partner, coach, advocate, a ctivist and blogger

    mobile/cell: +819-349-0102 (Canada EST) skype: amazingwomenrockme _____________________________________

    From: Alzheimer’s Speaks Blog Reply-To: Alzheimer’s Speaks Blog Date: Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at 8:01 AM To: Susan Macaulay Subject: [New post] The Buzz About Fragile Storm? Alzheimer’s Speaks posted: “What Is All The Buzz About The Film Fragile Storm? Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio Thursday May 18th, 2017 2pm EST, 1pm CST, 12pm MST, 11am PST and 7pm London Time Thursday May 18th at 1pm, Dawn Fields is the director, producer, editor and co-writer of the mult”

    1. Hi Susan. Dawn said she is open to chatting. I think she explains the whys of the film. In some ways I see the film as a simulation for how some feel as the disease progresses. I think her goal was to get people to feel the pain of loving deeply and not always knowing how to care ( on many levels) as the disease progressed.
      To me it can be used as an awakening like the virtual tours it’s not saying this is how it actually is to physically and emotional care but to expose potential feelings on both sides

    1. This is the email exchange we had after I had contacted Dawn through her website or FB or somewhere.

      Dawn: I’m really sorry the film has affected you so negatively. We’re not saying that the film makes a good or bad statement. It’s simply a story about THESE TWO FICTIONAL characters and what happened to them. It’s fiction, not a documentary.

      Susan: I understand that it’s a dramatization.

      Dawn: If this film upsets you, then so should every other film that depicts things in our lives that are unpleasant.

      Susan: What is at issue is your film, not what other things
      I may or may not react to.

      Dawn: We are not trying to glamorize or romanticize the illness.

      Susan: I didn’t say you were.

      Dawn: We are not doctors or specialists of any kind, which is why this is not a documentary. It is simply a dramatized story of what these two people went through.

      Susan: I get that.

      Dawn: Perhaps you can use it in training and discussions to explain WHY people shouldn’t let things get this bad, WHY they should seek help, and HOW this type of situation can be avoided. However you want to approach it.

      Susan: I would never use this in any kind of training, it’s too disturbing and contains too many potential triggers.

      Dawn: But I must say that using words like “rape” and “bdsm” in reference to our film is equally upsetting and disturbing to us.

      Susan: I’m sorry you are upset and disturbed by these words, which I think accurately describe what you infer in the first part of the film.

      Dawn: Not to mention,completely inaccurate, inappropriate, unfair, counter productive and exploitative in the worst possible way.

      Susan: I disagree; I think they are bang on point. Yesterday, I wrote and posted this on my blog:

      I’m happy to continue a dialogue with you as long as you remain
      respectful of us a filmmakers. 🙂

      Likewise, Susan

      I received no response after that.

      I think I made it clear in my blog post that I believe that, as a film, the piece is brilliantly executed. I wrote:

      “As a film, Fragile Storm is arresting. It’s skillfully shot and masterfully acted; it’s compelling to watch. Not surprisingly, it’s garnered a host of awards on the festival circuit. As one friend commented: ‘It sucks you in, it’s scary, like a scary movie, but then the twist is he isn’t her captor he’s her husband just trying to keep a promise.’ There’s no denying the clever twist, and the underlying love story.”

      I also wrote: “I fully understand the film is a dramatization; it’s a movie, fiction not reality. But it tells a story that is meant to reflect reality, and I don’t believe it does, or at least not the reality of the majority of dementia care partnerships.”

      And: “Those who conceived and produced Fragile Storm are clearly talented filmmakers.”

      I’m not sure how I could be any more “respectful” than that.

      All of that said, I still strongly believe that the film contributes to the stigma and myths associated with dementia and does a disservice by further entrenching the “tragic/negative narrative” that prevails. I can hear unskilled family care partners and care workers who blame the disease for someone who lives with dementia’s aggressive behaviour saying “You see! This is what they get like!” It reinforces erroneous beliefs, and makes changing mindsets more difficult. Are there cases like this? Probably. Many? Probably not.

      I believe this kind of scenario is atypical. And I am in no way blaming care partners or care workers – I held the same false beliefs when I first started caring for my mom and I made the same mistakes and provoked the same problematic responses. But I learned to do things differently when I understood that it was MY behaviour not hers that was problematic. By reinforcing the stereotypes it becomes harder for people to see what is really going on.

      That’s my view.

      As a film, I think it’s extremely well done, and, as I wrote, I’m not surprised it has won all kinds of awards. On the rest, well, I think I’ve said all I can say and we will probably have to agree to disagree ☺

      Sorry I can’t make the show, I have another commitment.

      1. Susan I mistakenly approved this for the public and have unapproved. I am not comfortable posting excerpts of a private conversation publicly without permission from both parties but thank you for Sharing. 😄

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