When seminal documentary filmmaker Ed Pincus (Black Natchez, The Axe in the Attic), considered the father of first-person nonfiction film, is diagnosed with a terminal illness, he and his collaborator Lucia Small (My Father, The Genius, The Axe in the Attic) team up to make one last film. Before his death in November 2013, Ed and Lucia fulfilled their long-discussed idea for a personal documentary told from two separate points of view – two filmmakers, two worlds. This final collaboration –fueled by an urgent certainty– navigates discussions of mortality, love, loss and legacy with palpable vulnerability and piercing intimacy rarely seen in non-fiction. From the perspectives of their different backgrounds, generations, genders, and classes, each filmmaker captures the challenging and delicate territory of Ed’s unfolding illness, Lucia’s bereavement in the wake of the sudden, violent deaths of two close friends, along with Ed’s wife Jane’s on-again, off-again resistance to the project. Through their all-out commitment to the film and their friendship, One Cut, One Life gives the viewer access not only to what the film meant to its creators, to their bodies of work, and to first-person nonfiction film, but also to the daring and fiery impulses of human creativity. Co-director Small joins us to talk about her personal and professional journey in making an extraordinarily intimate portrait of life, love and death.
Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Ed Pincus: a discussion on pushing boundaries — up close and personal featuring Neal Baer, Jim Lane, and Scott Foundas at Emerson College LA Sunday, June 14, 2:00pm-3:30pm, screening to follow at Laemmle Music Hall
“Extremely personal and moving…as much as the film is shadowed by a keen awareness of mortality, ‘One Cut, One Life’ often pulses with an almost ecstatic vitality. In its vision of human existence, life is as messy and unpredictable as it is precious. CRITIC’S PICK!” – Stephen Holden, The New York Times
“CRITICS’ PICK! A stunning doc of living while dying.“ – Diana Clarke, Village Voice
“Deeply personal and unavoidably moving.” – Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter
“An elegy for the dead, the dying, and those who live on, ‘One Cut, One Life’ is a singular work made from a double vision… It’s a thing of lovely imperfections: profound and banal, self-absorbed and insightful, weighted with grief and buoyed by resilience. In short, as messy and precious as life itself” – Ty Burr, Boston Globe
“Without censoring themselves, the filmmakers turn their cameras on themselves, using their art to reveal their psyches in a masterpiece of personalized direct cinema. Brilliant. Brave. Moving. A must-see.” – Jennifer Merin, Women’s eNews