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This is a remarkable film documenting life of two extra ordinary people who contributed a lot in the character definition of the arts in their lifetime. They have been hailed as The Houdini of recent times in relation to the music composition and dance choreography. This movie is a life account of John Cage, the late acclaimed music composer and his long time friend and collaborator, better known for his dance-choreography, Merce Cunningham. 

The movie which was directed and edited by Elliot Caplan premiered last year in Paris. Elliot had worked with both Cage and Cunningham for over a decade thus was the best choice to direct the two main casts in the movie production. It is sad that Cage died barely two months after the movie premiere. The movie takes the viewer in an inner tour of life of two respected gentlemen as far back as when they were young boys. There does not seem to be a script that was followed in the movie production, rather it follows the main casts as they lived their daily lives. There is presence of a running camera following the casts as they go through typical days in their lives. The movie is intriguing especially since it lacks a narration or voice over to guide the viewers through the recordings.

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The movie utilizes the typical tools used in documentary productions like the incorporation of early still photos, archival rehearsal footage and performances, interviews. The interviews in this documentary are done with these artists themselves and with other people who worked with them during their lifetime of performance. The supporting cast included people like Nam June Paik, Robert Rauschenberg, Carolyn Brown and Viola Farber.  The movie also includes other ingredients typical of a documentary like the use of informal shots of the casts working and living times including bits of information gathered from comments offered by their friends such as painters Jasper Johns and Frank Stella, composer-critic Virgil Thomson. The layout of the movie is nothing new and one may be disappointed that lives of such innovative individuals ended up being summarized in a short, ordinary documentary. All it gives is just a sneak preview of what the viewers never got to see thus allowing the viewers to get to know these two men in the unusually intimate way both as artists and as individuals.

The movie uses the works of these two men extensively clearly adopting the open minded multi talents of the main casts. It shows them in their best light as they led their performance groups through practice sessions and actual performances in front of audiences. Eventually, the movie becomes more than a sensitive portrait of Cage and Cunningham and their artistic prowess, but it ends up being a worthy complement to them and their work.

There are some very moving moments captured in the movie besides the artistic side of the casts. A memorable moment is defined when Cage is seen watering his plants and even cooking, and when Cunningham recalls that Cage got a traffic ticket for driving their old Volkswagen tour bus into town with hanging paint on the sides. There is enough footage to fill the appetite of any dance enthusiasts and show the extremes Cunningham went through to reach perfection. The included is a magic scene where one gets to see Cage in a theater pit, painstakingly brushing twigs across a board to get the sound just like the one before a performance.

In a nutshell, this is a well arranged and organized piece of art in its own right which puts the icing on the cake for the beautiful lives of two wonderful gentlemen. They gave their all in the pursuit of their passions and this turned to be just the beginning of their individually successful lives and careers. They both may be gone but their memories live on. 

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