- Innovative and Exciting Doc That Shows True Reverence For Its Subject 5/8/2018 12:00:00 AM by jakelichter
This was by far one of the best and more interestingly put together documentaries I have ever seen. To me, it felt more like a portrait than a documentary in that it had no intention of telling a linear story of Milford Grave's life and career, but rather focused on short bursts of archival footage which illustrate central themes in the subject's work. The editing is inventive and totally in sync with the pacing of the film and with Milford's playing and speaking. When I was told that the film has no voices or music besides Graves' I wasn't sure how well that would keep my attention for an hour and a half. The pacing of the film, however, kept me interested and wanting more. The archival footage is amazing and is seamlessly interwoven with present-day interviews.
- FULL MANTIS 5/7/2018 12:00:00 AM by billnace
Beautiful new documentary on the incomparable Milford Graves. Director Jake Megsinky maintains enough of a light touch to give his subject all the breathing room he needs yet simultaneously insinuates himself through an almost musical editing pace and style to cut directly to some of the core pieces of Professor Graves' teachings. Add to that some blistering live footage and this is an impressionistic and vibrant portrait of a musical iconoclast that stands alongside Les Blanks The World According to Lightning and Jem Cohens Benjamin Smoke
- pushing Music documentary to the next level 5/7/2018 12:00:00 AM by helmutmut
Diving into this film is a life changer! Milford Graves appears to be a extremely generous human being, following his own path to many great discoveries. Where science meet politics, esoterism and underground jazz history meets botanics, martial arts meets love, and art teaching meets engagement! one of the most vibrant musicians of our times open his doors to a very respectfull cinematographer, letting us listen to an essential voice of the 20th century! Beautifull film!
- extraordinary insight into the world of a jazz genius 5/7/2018 12:00:00 AM by gershenson
This might be the best music documentary I've ever seen. Milford Graves (look him up) is an unusual jazz musician, with a singular artistic sensibility, taking his drum rhythms from his own and others' bodies. He experiments with recordings of heart sounds (ECG, the whole works), learns about neural pathways and how they connect with movement and sounds. On tour in Japan, he is to perform in a school for autistic kids--we get to experience the show through archival footage--we see how the tense children, each rocking to their own unhappy inner tune, start gravitating to Graves, as his drums revel in a kind of primal ritual sounds. They are all dancing and moving, some coming close to touch the drums, the source of the rhythm. Jake Meginsky is also a musician, and it took him 15 years of learning from and following Graves to make the movie. The film sings and breaths, and moves, the images in sync with the music.It's a must see for jazz and film lovers--right now the film premiered at the Lincoln Center's Art of the Real festival, but I am sure it will find distribution. See it!
- An Incredibly moving and wildly vibrant Masterpiece 5/5/2018 12:00:00 AM by finleyjanes
Viewing this film is like getting lost is a beautiful and tender poem where you have the privilege of spending time with one of the most prolific musical and intellectual minds of our time. Milford Graves Full Mantis is a impossibly beautiful film that left me physically and emotionally shook.