Do Not Go Gently


Copyright 2007

Narrated by Walter Cronkite at age 90, Do Not Go Gently is an hour-long documentary about the power of imagination in aging. At the center are three extraordinary artists in their 80s, 90s and 100s who, in their youth, fundamentally influenced American culture; and now in old age, continue to contribute.
Portraits include the godfather of modern music Leo Ornstein, 109 (filmed two weeks before his death); premiere danseur Frederic Franklin, 90; and Arlonzia Pettway, 82, one of the eldest quilters in Gee¹s Bend, Alabama. At primary importance, we explore the work and personalities of these creative icons in old age. The results? They have secrets for a resilient approach to aging.

The science of creativity and aging is uncovered little by little in the film by Dr. Gene Cohen, author ofThe Creative Age: Awakening Human Potential in the Second Half of Life (Avon Books, 2000) and The Mature Mind: The Positive Power of the Aging Brain (Basic Books, 2006). As we follow a day in the life of Dr. Cohen and his work at the Creativity Discovery Corps in Washington, D.C., his insight reveals progressively deeper levels of brain science and psychology.

Finally, we witness the principles of creativity applied to people with Alzheimer’s disease and other disabilities of old age at day care centers and nursing homes in Washington D.C. In the most pure documentary vérité, the innovative work of the non-profit organization, Arts for the Aging, reveals the healing power of imagination for populations suffering the common disabilities of age: frailty, dementia and depression.

Gold Medal – Humanities – 2008 New York International Film & Video Festival
American Society on Aging 2008 National Medial Award for Best Electronic Media
2008 Silver Telly Award
Remi Winner, WorldFest Houston International Film Festival, 2008


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