My Amazing Brain: Richard's War (2018)
Directed by Fiona Lloyd-Davies, 59 mins
What happens after a catastrophic stroke?
This film shows in extraordinary detail the rarely seen journey back to recovery. Fly-on-the-wall footage recorded by his wife Fiona a filmmaker, over four years, shows in gritty detail the hard graft of recovery. Initially bed bound unable to do anything, Fiona tells us that the outlook for him is bleak. Yet occasionally we see small glimmers of hope. We witness the moment his fingers move for the first time and then over months watch him struggle to relearn how to walk again. In archive footage we see and hear him at his professional best, when he was a peacekeeper with the United Nations immersed in the brutal war in Sarajevo, Bosnia. We also hear from surgeons and clinicians who were integral to his recovery, from describing life-saving surgery, high-risk reconstructive surgery, to intensive rehabilitation programmes that push Richard to his limits.
Fiona narrates the film and includes excerpts from her diary describing with raw emotion how she felt as she saw her husband, once a rugged soldier decimated by the stroke. As the film starts she asks “will Richard, my Richard still be there?” By the end the answer is clear.