First Cousin Once Removed 2012

Directed by Alan Berliner Legends

Winner of the Best Documentary award at IDFA, director Alan Berliner’s film about his lifelong friend and mentor, the distinguished poet and translator Edwin Honig, becomes a profound study in identity and memory.

Jul 24

Academy Cinema

In Your Wishlist
Jul 25

Academy Cinema

In Your Wishlist
Aug 02

Rialto Cinemas Newmarket

In Your Wishlist
79 minutes B&W/Blu-ray/Colour
Exempt

Director

Editor

Alan Berliner

Producers

Alan Berliner
,
Shari Spiegel

Photography

Ian Vollmer

Music

Miranda Hentodd

With

Edwin Honig
,
Alan Berliner

Festivals

New York
,
Amsterdam Documentary 2012; SXSW 2013

Awards

Best Feature-Length Documentary
,
International Documentary Festival Amsterdam 2012

Elsewhere

Alan Berliner’s profound – and profoundly personal – exploration of the inextricability of memory and identity will carry specific resonance for anyone who’s witnessed the progress of Alzheimer’s disease. Its humbling achievement though, is to apply to any of us: Berliner holds and savours the very elements of our humanity that a failing memory extinguishes. In the meticulous style of his earlier family portraits, he constructs a many-faceted picture of his lifelong friend and mentor, the distinguished poet, translator and critic Edwin Honig. He threads that portrait with documentation of the last five years of Honig’s life, from the time he began showing signs of Alzheimer’s and gave Berliner permission to film his decline. Honig’s strength of spirit, his charm and his creative love of words persist through increasing bouts of confusion, but the disease, of course, is bent on rendering him unrecognisable.

“Heartbreaking, haunting and unexpectedly heartening… Its unblinking look at a once-formidable intelligence descending into the abyss succeeds because of a fusion of subject and filmmaker that is transcendent.” — Kenneth Turan, LA Times