December 1969, Thelonious Monk in Paris. Before his evening concert, he records a programme for French television.
The rushes show a Thelonious Monk who is in the grip of the violent factory of stereotypes from which he tries to escape.
The film becomes the crossing of this great artist, who would like to exist only for his music. And the portrait in hollow of a media machine as ridiculous as it is revolting.
Here is the machine in action. Deconstructing these rushes as phantasms. To see the factory of caricatures at work. Deaf, smiling, ambiguous, admiring and sickening. To hold the microphone without listening, to marvel without seeing.
Trying to overturn the point of view.
Here is Thelonious going through the ordeal, at work, as if he had landed on a strange planet, where a portrait is being made that he cannot do anything about. Tired by the years spent undergoing this painful exercise.
Fortunately, he plays, and in doing so, he makes more than anything else be said.
“It brings tears to my eyes when I see the shit that my father was going through” T.S Monk Jr.
by Alain Gomis
with Thelonious Monk
France / Germany 2022 French,  English 65’ Colour World premiere Documentary form

With

  • Thelonious Monk

Crew

DirectorAlain Gomis
EditingAlain Gomis
SoundMatthieu Deniau
ProducersAnouk Khélifa, Arnaud Dommerc
Co-ProductionINA, Bry-sur-Marne, Frankreich
In Cooperation withARTE France – La Lucarne, Straßburg, Frankreich
Les Films du Worso, Paris, Frankreich
Schortcut Films, Beirut, Libanon
Die Gesellschaft DGS, Köln, Deutschland
Studio Orlando, Paris, Frankreich

Produced by

Sphere Films

Alain Gomis

Born in 1972 in Paris, France. He studied art history and film. After making videos and short films, his first feature film L’afrance (2002) won the Silver Leopard at Locarno. His last film Félicité was shown at the Competition section of the 2017 Berlinale.

Filmography

1996 Caramels et chocolats; 12 min. 1998 Tout le monde peut se tromper; 8 min. 1999 Tourbillons (Whirlwinds); 13 min. 2002 L’afrance (As a Man); 90 min. 2003 Petite lumière (Little Light); 15 min. 2006 Ahmed; 15 min. 2008 Andalucia; 90 min. 2012 Aujourd'hui (Today); 86 min. 2017 Félicité; 129 min. 2022 Rewind & Play; 65 min.

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2022