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This film is followed by a prerecorded afterword from the filmmaker, courtesy of Best Of Doc France.

Emmanuelle Bernheim and Alain Cavalier have been friends for 30 years, and are planning to collaborate on a film adaptation of Bernheim’s recent memoir recounting the story of her father’s search for an assisted death. In the film, Bernheim will portray herself, and Cavalier will play her father. However, things take an abrupt, tragic turn as Emmanuelle herself receives a terminal cancer diagnosis. Suddenly, the project’s focus changes.

Living and Knowing You Are Alive is a new chapter in Cavalier’s ongoing idiosyncratic personal diary, blending personal encounters with introspection, poetic fragments, and small, intimate rituals glimpsed in the secret garden of his workshop. The 87-year-old filmmaker documents his friendship with Bernheim through snapshots, notes and phone messages, and the film becomes an offbeat rumination on the end of a life, including a mock rehearsal of Cavalier’s own passing. The result is a joyful celebration of life and the time we have together. -TG

  • Year
  • Runtime
    82 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
  • Director
    Alain Cavalier