Private Project

Will You Remember Me?

When a compassionate nurse notices one of her Alzheimer’s patients starting to show signs of the end of her life, she tries everything to bring her peace at the end, but doing so forces the nurse to balance the contradictions of her job and confront her own fears about loss.

  • Will Dowler
  • Julia Moran
  • Dakota Callicott
    Director of Photography
  • Val Higgins
  • Jacob Braxton
    Sound Designer, Composer
  • Amelia Violet Prouse
    Assistant Editor
  • Colleen Cove
  • Lucille Olson
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Student
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    12 minutes 40 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 30, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    2,500 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    4K BRAW and 4K 422 h.264
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - Savannah College of Art and Design
Director Biography - Will Dowler

Will Dowler is a filmmaker, video artist, and entrepreneur from Connecticut. Drawn to the universal themes of loss, hope, and change, his work seeks to uncover the inherent poetry found in everyday life. "Will You Remember Me?" is his most ambitious documentary project to date produced under his production company, Montamat. He pursued higher education at Syracuse University and graduated with a BFA in Film & Television from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD).

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Director Statement

My aunt Colleen first started working in nursing homes when she was sixteen. Now in the 45th year of her career, I set out to understand why she does it and how she continues to work despite the circumstances. What happens when everyone you are assigned to care for inevitably dies from a terminal brain disease? What kind of emotional toll does that have on a person? How does she process all of the suffering that gets put on her? It all seems too overwhelming for one person to bear. This project began as an investigation to find answers for those questions, and through the process, an unexpected story of two humans emerged: a story of empathy, generosity, service, and connection. By complete chance, the film contains rare moments with Colleen and her oldest patient, Lucille, that are wholly unique and can never be recreated. The process of dying from dementia is presented nakedly for us to witness. It proves that—despite all that is unknown about dementia—the emotional parts of our brains remain active until the very end. On a deeply personal level, it dignifies and immortalizes Lucille’s final expression of her identity. Throughout it all, Colleen reveals the answers to my original questions, and we understand her as a flawed, complex, and ultimately inspirational person doing her best to improve an imperfect world.

The journey of making this film pushed me through an existential crisis full of doubts and fears and anxieties tied to dementia and memory in general. Many times I was left wondering, “What will we leave behind after we’re gone?” and, “Will any of that matter if nobody remembers?” With such a heavy topic, it can be easy to let the weight of it drag you down. All of this informed the title, Will You Remember Me?