Milford Graves Full Mantis

June 29, 2021
Weaving blistering performance footage from Europe, Japan, and the U.S. with a sublimely restrained, intimate glimpse into a world-renowned jazz percussionist’s singular voice and complex cosmology.

MILFORD GRAVES FULL MANTIS is the first ever feature-length portrait of renowned percussionist Milford Graves, exploring his kaleidoscopic creativity and relentless curiosity.

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.

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.

Director: Jake Meginsky

Stars: Milford Graves

Writers: Milford Graves, Jake Meginsky

Release Date: 2018

 

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