First Cousin Once Removed

V'13

First Cousin Once Removed

Alan Berliner
USA, 2011
Documentaries, 78min, OF

© Viennale © Viennale © Viennale

First Cousin Once Removed

Alan Berliner
USA, 2011
Documentaries, 78min, OF

Cast: 
Edwin Honig
Lila Putnam
Margot Dennes-Honig
Daniel Honig
Screenplay: 
Alan Berliner
Sound: 
Ian Vollmer
Doug Dunderdale
Camera: 
Ian Vollmer
Editor: 
Alan Berliner
Composer: 
Miranda Hentoff

Production: 
Experiments in Time
Light & Motion
World Sales: 
HBO International Distribution
Format: 
HDCam
Color and Black/White

Sometime in the new millennium, Edwin Honig – the distinguished poet, translator, critic and university professor – began showing signs of Alzheimer’s disease, which gradually but inexorably brought on the loss of his memory, command of language and relation to the past. Filmmaker Alan Berliner – for whom Honig was a cousin, a friend and a mentor – documented their meetings over five years; his new film chronicles the steady decline of Honig’s mind and body, but also the strength and stamina of his spirit, as well as his innate charm and wonderfully playful way with words and sounds. Occasional moments of lucidity offer an insight as to the ways in which Honig attempts to make sense out of what is happening to him. FIRST COUSIN ONCE REMOVED is an unflinching essay on the fragility of being human, and a stark reminder of the profound role that memory plays in all of our lives. (Film Society Lincoln Center)

In the presence of Alan Berliner.