Her Beautiful Brain is Ann Hedreen's story of what it was like to become a mom just as her beautiful, brainy mother began to lose her mind to an unforgiving disease.
Arlene, a copper miner's daughter, divorced twice, widowed once- raised six kids single-handedly, survived the turbulent 60s, and got her B.A. and M.A. at 40 in order to support her family as a Seattle schoolteacher. But in her late fifties she began to show signs of Alzheimer's disease, taking Ann and her siblings on a long descent they never could have anticipated or imagined.
For two decades as Ann married, had her own children, navigated career changes and marital crises, and built a life making documentary films with her husband, she watched her once-invincible mom disappear.
From Seattle to Haiti to the mine-gouged Finntown neighborhood in Butte, Montana; from Arlene's favorite tennis club to a locked geropsychiatric ward, Her Beautiful Brain tells the heartbreaking story of a daughter's love for a mother lost in the wilderness of an unpredictable and harrowing illness.