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As I Was Moving Ahead Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty (2000)

Director Jonas Mekas provides an intimate glimpse of his personal life by constructing a feature length narrative from over 30 years of private home movie footage.


Jonas Mekas


Jonas Mekas




Credited cast:
Jonas Mekas ... Self / Narrator
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jane Brakhage Jane Brakhage ... Self (archive footage)
Stan Brakhage ... Self (archive footage)
Robert Breer Robert Breer ... Self (archive footage)
Hollis Frampton Hollis Frampton ... Self (archive footage)
Allen Ginsberg ... Self (archive footage)
Ken Jacobs Ken Jacobs ... Self (archive footage)
Peter Kubelka Peter Kubelka ... Self (archive footage)
Adolfas Mekas Adolfas Mekas ... Self (archive footage)
Oona Mekas ... Self (archive footage)
Sebastian Mekas Sebastian Mekas ... Self (archive footage)
Hermann Nitsch Hermann Nitsch ... Self (archive footage)
Nam June Paik Nam June Paik ... Self (archive footage)
P. Adams Sitney P. Adams Sitney ... Self (archive footage)
Andy Warhol ... Self (archive footage)


Director Jonas Mekas provides an intimate glimpse of his personal life by constructing a feature length narrative from over 30 years of private home movie footage.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Did You Know?


"The ultimate Dogma movie before the birth of Dogma," is how its maker, Jonas Mekas described it. See more »


[first lines]
Jonas Mekas: I have never been able, really, to figure out where my life begins and where it ends. I have never, never been able to figure it all out, what's all about. What it all means. So when I began, now, to put all these rolls of film together, to string them together, the first idea was to keep them chronologic. But then I gave up, and I just began splicing them together by chance, the way that I found them on the shelf, because I really did not know where any piece of my life really ...
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Both Sides Now
Written by Joni Mitchell
Performed by Judy Collins
Courtesy of Elektra/Asylum Records
By arrangement with Warner Music Group Film & TV Licensing
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User Reviews

Interesting idea but execution isn't great.
23 November 2019 | by yuuki-23947See all my reviews

The concept of the movie works, the image are sometimes mesmerizing and the comments interesting and funny. When the right combination of music and shots come together it is very nice.

That said it could have been shorter, some parts are quite repetitive, there's like 5 "ecstasy of summer in NYC", several shots of winters that are very similar, etc. And while the shaky, unfocused shots have their charm, they can become tedious. Jonas Mekas does tell you at some point he's not a film maker, but that's a sometimes a bit too apparent in the work itself.

That said it's really good material if you want to zone out, you can watch this with fleeting attention and not miss much of the experience.

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Official Sites:

DVD | Official site





Release Date:

12 December 2001 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

As I Moved Ahead Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(12 parts)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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