"Most of what was known about Kaufman's life and biography was shrouded in myth and legend", according to one speaker in this documentary about Beat-Generation poet Bob Kaufman who died in 1986. It’s the myths and legends about Kaufman that make this film's title (based of course on one of his texts) so apt. Passing on stories keeps people alive long after their last breath. So evoking these tales about Kaufman is almost as if Kaufman were being evoked himself.
Yet L.A. Rebellion director Billy Woodberry, who is making a comeback with this film, is not only interested in the tall stories. With detailed, personal anecdotes, rare archive material and poems that appeal to the imagination, he creates a complex portrait of Kaufman, a Beat Poet like Ginsberg, but also a black street poet. His is the story of a developing American counterculture: of jazz, folk and poetry, but also of drugs, arrests and institutionalised racism.

Filmmaker
Billy Woodberry
Country
USA, Portugal
Year
2015
Medium
DCP
Length
89’
Language
English
Producer
Billy Woodberry, Rui Alexandre Santos
Production Company
BK Project, Rosa Filmes
Sales
Rosa Filmes
Writer
Billy Woodberry
Cinematography
Pierre Desir
Editor
Luís Nunes, Amir Manesh
Website
https://rosafilmes.com/and-when-i-die-i-wont-stay-dead