MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS
A FEATURE FILM
"This movie gives you, well, the man’s heart, and it’s a beautiful one."
"Form and content collide in inspiring ways"
"An elegant and patient portrait of [Milford] Graves."
"As much a visual poem as it is a documentary."
"A sonic-visual ode to the ineffable magic of inspired and gracious living."
"A kaleidoscopic portrait of the drummer’s belief in the cosmic potential of music"
"The work of someone who somehow arrived at a mature understanding of how to transcend the limitations of the biographical musical documentary genre, who realized seemingly intuitively that you can tell the story of a person's life, or you can use that life to tell a story, in sound and pictures, not in words."
William Horberg, Producer (Cold Mountain, The Kite Runner)
"One of the best jazz documentaries ever assembled... a singular viewing experience."
Byron Coley, The Wire : Adventures In Modern Music
"Rhythmically right on."
"This is filmmaking that helps remind us of the profundity of our most basic senses, and the rhythm that guides and glides with them."
"Like Graves's music, the film is uncompromisingly original in form, but it teaches us to watch and enjoy it."
MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS is the first ever feature-length portrait of renowned percussionist Milford Graves, exploring his kaleidoscopic creativity and relentless curiosity.
Graves has performed internationally since 1964, both as a soloist and in ensembles with such legends as Albert Ayler, Giuseppi Logan and Sonny Sharrock. He is a founding pioneer of avant-garde jazz, and he remains one of the most influential living figures in the evolution of the form.
The film draws the viewer through the artist’s lush garden and ornate home, into the martial arts dojo in his backyard and the laboratory in his basement - all of this just blocks from where he grew up in the housing projects of South Jamaica, Queens.
Graves tells stories of discovery, struggle and survival, ruminates on the essence of 'swing,' activates electronic stethoscopes in his basement lab to process the sound of his heart, and travels to Japan where he performs at a school for children with autism, igniting the student body into an ecstatic display of spontaneous collective energy.
Oscillating from present to past and weaving intimate glimpses of the artist’s complex cosmology with blistering performances from around the globe, MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS is cinema full of fluidity, polyrhythm and intensity, embodying the essence of Graves’ music itself.
Jake Meginsky / Director
Neil Young / Co-Director
Milford Graves / Music and Words
Jake Meginsky, Neil Young / Editing
Neil Young / Cinematography
Jake Meginsky / Producer
Neil Young, Gabe Chicoine, George Myers / Co-producers
Neil Young, Jake Meginsky, Marcus DeMaio / Camera
Jake Meginsky / Sound Design
Milford Graves / Animations
Ernst Karel / Re-Recording Mix
Jeffrey Weaver / Titles
Evan Schwenterly / Color Correction
Modulus / Post Finishing Facility
SEP 21 - 27 - Amherst Cinema | Amherst, MA
SEP 21 - 22 - Portland Museum of Art | Portland, ME
SEP 27 - Lightbox Film Center (Scribe Producers Lab) | Philadelphia, PA
SEP 27 - Figge Art Museum | Davenport, IA
SEP 28 - OCT 04 - Facets | Chicago, IL
OCT 02 - 04 - The Guild | Albuquerque, NM
OCT 05 - Doku.Arts | Berlin, Germany
OCT 9 - Unsound | Krakow, Poland
OCT 10 - Antenna Documentary Film Fest | Glebe NSW, AUS
OCT 11 - Sound Forms | Copenhagen, Denmark
OCT 12 - Tusk Festival | Newcastle, United Kingdom
OCT 14 - No Bounds Festival | Sheffield, United Kingdom
OCT 18 - Verge Center for the Arts | Sacramento, CA
OCT 19 - Open Colour | Brighton, United Kingdom
OCT 20 - Images Cinema | Williamstown, MA
OCT 21 - Cleveland Museum of Art | Cleveland, OH
OCT 24 - Northwest Film Forum | Seattle, WA
OCT 25 - Barking Legs Theatre | Chattanooga, TN
OCT 26 - Smithsonian - National Museum of African American History and Culture | Washington, DC
OCT 26 - Parkway Theatre | Baltimore, MD
NOV 7 - Cinemapolis | Ithaca, NY
NOV 9-30 - Museum of Fine Arts | Boston, MA
NOV 17 - Tone Deaf | Ontario, Canada
NOV 14 - 18 - Sound Unseen Fest | Minneapolis, MN
DEC (TBA) - Altered States // La Casa Encendida Art Center of Madrid | Madrid, SP
DEC 05 - BAMCinematetek | Brooklyn, NY
SEP 13 - Winnipeg Film Group Cinematheque | Winnipeg, MB
SEP 10 - The Belcourt | Nashville, TN
SEP 09 - Film Streams | Omaha, NE
SEP 07 - 12 - ICA London | Londong, UK
SEP 08 - Resonancy | Raleigh, NC
SEPT 2 - Glasgow Film Theater | Glasgow, Scotland
SEPT 1 - Tyneside Cinema | Newcastle, UK
AUG 31 - Dundee Contemporary Arts | Dundee, UK
AUG 30 - Freedom Music Festival | Copenhagen, Denmark
AUG 30 - Into The Great Wide Open Festival | Oost-vlieland, Netherlands
AUG 30 - Hyde Park Picture House | Leeds, UK
AUG 29 - Bertha Doc House | London, UK
AUG 27 - Austin Film Society | Austin, TX
AUG 24 - Austin Film Society | Austin, TX
AUG 22 - Maysles Documentary Center | Harlem, NYC
AUG 15 - Texas Theater | Dallas, TX
AUG 15 - AUG 23 Northwest Film Forum | Seattle, WA
AUG 14 to AUG 16 - Zeitgeist Theater | New Orleans, LA
JUL 27 to AUG 5 - Roxie Theater | San Franscisco, CA
JUL 27 to AUG 2 - Laemmle Music Hall | Los Angeles, CA
JUL 20 to 26 - The Screening Room | Amherst, NY
JUL 13 to AUG 2 - Metrograph | NYC
Jul 12 - Manchester Jazz Festival, Manchester, UK
JUL 9 - BFI Southbank | London, UK
JUL 1 - The Hollywood Theatre - Sonic Cinema | Portland, OR
JUN 16 - The Museum of Fine Arts Houston - Jazz on Film Screening | Houston, TX
JUN 15 - Oak Cliff Film Festival | Dallas, TX
JUN 9 & 11 - Sheffield Doc Fest | Sheffield, United Kingdom
JUN 9 - The Thing In The Spring Festival | Peterborough, NH
APR 27 & MAY 6 - Film Society of Lincoln Center - Art of the Real (SOLD OUT) | New York, NY
MAY 3 & 5 - Maryland Film Festival | Baltimore, MD
APR 30 & MAY 2 - Indielisboa Film Festival | Lisboa, Portugal
APR 20 & 21 - Sarasota Film Festival - Independent Visions Competition | Sarasota, FL
MAR 23 - Big Ears Festival (Public Cinema Regal Riviera) | Knoxville, TN
MAR 17 & 21 - CPH:DOX* Festival: Vester Vov Vov | Copenhagen, Denmark
MAR 13, 15 & 16 - SXSW | Austin, TX
JAN 27 & 29 - International Film Festival Rotterdam | Rotterdam, Netherlands