Advice for 93 and 49 year old watching...

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Brenda M, Jun 17, 2004.

  1. Brenda M

    Brenda M Stunt Coordinator

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    I am the fulltime caregiver for my 93 year old mother. She has dementia and her attention span is short now. The trouble is finding anything that we can watch together. I have a couple Lawrence Welk tapes, but I usually leave the room when they are on. I have tried Yankee Doodle Dandy, Meet Me in St. Louis, Adventures of Robin Hood and while they have thier moments, there are slow spots.

    Help please, advice for movies or documentaries that are easy to understand and captivating for an elderly person and caregiver.
     
  2. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    Singin' in the Rain
    North By Northwest

    Regards,
     
  3. Bob Maged

    Bob Maged Stunt Coordinator

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    Memento and Mulholland Drive








    Sorry, couldn't resist.[​IMG]

    Seriously, though, any of the classic musicals should be entertaining enough for both of you.
     
  4. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Executive Producer

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    Bob, you're sick! [​IMG]

    You might consider some TV boxed sets. Maybe TV episodes would be a better bet than full-length movies.
     
  5. Nils Luehrmann

    Nils Luehrmann Producer

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    Brenda,

    First of all you are an angel for not only taking care of your mother, but also doing everything you can to make her life more enjoyable.

    Unfortunately with your mother being 93, plagued with dementia, and a short attention span there really is no movie that will likely be able to keep her interest for very long.

    My suggestion is pick films that you believe she has seen before and has a fond memory of. Then watch one until she becomes disinterested. At that point pause it and then try and discuss what you all just saw with her then turn the film back on. Continue that same pattern until the end of the film.

    Another idea might be to create a custom DVD with clips from many of her favorite moments in movies (or at least moments that you believe will stir her interest/memories). Of course doing this requires a computer, specialized software, and some editing skills. You might be able to hire someone locally to make one for you. With a lot of patience you could also possibly make a decent video tape of clips of classic films recorded of TV.

    I wish you and your mother the very best, and once again, you are an angel on earth!
     
  6. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    the "thats entertainment" series of films might be a good idea.
    werent they supposed to be on dvd this year?
     
  7. Rob Gardiner

    Rob Gardiner Cinematographer

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    How about Looney Tunes or Walt Disney Treasures?
     
  8. JohnVB

    JohnVB Stunt Coordinator

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    Depending on how bad the dementia is, you may have to give up on the hope that your mom will be able to watch a full length movie and not loose interest. I don't think stopping a movie in the middle and talking about it will help, though, it might be worth a try.

    To get an idea what it may be like for her, start a movie in the middle somewhere and watch it for 15 or 20 minutes. Then pull the movie out and pop in another one starting in the middle, and repeat the process. That may be what it's like for someone who has memory loss from dementia. Again, it depends on how far the dementia has progressed.

    Is your mom very interetested in watching movies, or is this just something to pass the time? If it's just something to pass the time, you might try something other than movies. Gardening, for instance, might be a great activity. It depends on your mom, though.

    If your mom is a real movie buff, watching movies she's already seen could possibly work well. I suggest letting her pick what she wants to watch, and you just watch that with her. If you lose interest in the movies she's picking, grab a good book and read your book while you sit in the room with her.

    If your mom has a social worker or care provider, that person might have some good suggestions, as he or she is probably much more in touch with what your mom can and can't do.

    - bones
     
  9. Nick Senger

    Nick Senger Stunt Coordinator

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    Winged Migration
    And I second Singin' in the Rain
     
  10. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    There's only one answer .............

    Any episode you care to choose of:

    [​IMG]

    Whether 49, 93, or 19 -- this program can do wonders. [​IMG]
     
  11. Tory

    Tory -The Snappy Sneezer- -Red Huck-

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    Have you considered some short silent comedies? Try Slapstick Encyclopedia and Charle Chaplin's Short Comedy Classics, they are great if there is an interest. Also try the Carry On Line of films funny double entendres on a loose plot. Carry On is a comedy troupe that has been making British films since the 50's and on up until the modern day. There is a Carry On olection of 13 films that is pretty nice. The highlight is some period spoofs. Also there is a BBC sitcom that may be to some older women's liking called Keeping Up Appearances. It is about a woman obsessed with improving her social stature. She thinks highly of herself but really comes from the wrong side of the tracks. She is a very annoying woma and a comic genius. I am doing no justice to the character here but you may should look into her. It comes on BBC America and PBS but a DVD boxset is coming soon.
     
  12. Garrett Lundy

    Garrett Lundy Producer

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    How short is the attention span? I know people with , maximum, five minutes retention. They watch alot of videos on VH1. I work with one gentleman who has a STM of less than a minute! He will literally spend six hours a day re-reading the same page of a Louis L'amour novel and has been doing so for three years!

    Poor man
     
  13. Steve...O

    Steve...O Producer

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    Brenda,

    I think you're a saint. What a wonderful person you are. God Bless You.

    Please don't assume that just because she is older that only old movies will appeal to her. I know a 90 year old who can't stand old movies, but enjoys current fare very much. If you have cable, try finding some National Geographic specials or other documentaries that are primarily visual in nature. There is no "plot" that has to be followed to make it enjoyable. At the same time, the programming will have "substance" and do a good job of keeping your Mom's mind active.

    It's hard to make movie recommendations without knowing what your Mom's interests were when she was younger. However for comic relief please allow me to suggest the shorts of Laurel and Hardy. Even their sound shorts de-emphasize dialogue in favor of visual comedy. Most of them run about 20 minutes.

    Good luck.

    Steve
     
  14. Brenda M

    Brenda M Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you everyone for the excellent suggestions and encouragement. I can't believe that "That's Entertainment" isn't out yet, on my waiting list now. You have given me some ideas to try I haven't thought of and I think I take a trip to the library to see to see if they have some of them to test them out before I buy. And talking about old "shorts" reminded me of the Little Rascals, she loves seeing children, most of our family is all grown-up and then some.
     

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