AM Art Films

Mingus Erectus

Noel Balen

Mingus Erectus © Amaury Voslion

A pen scratches a notebook, rotary presses print a book, a double bass against the light. This is the film where words becomes music…



By following the narrators and the musicians recording the album in the studio, under the direction of Noël Balen and Etienne Gauthier, a strange magic is working. Is it the authenticity of the characters, the fact that music is photogenic? Words tell about Mingus and are also an invitation to dream, like interludes where emotions guide us. Because the camera captures the emotion felt by the characters and transmits it to us. Song after song, poem after poem, Charles appears and disappears, as a ghost that would come visit us. The double bass is his totem, Noel and his joyful band, the messengers. Then appear the weaknesses and torments of Mingus, his joys and what he loved, his faith in music and his brothers in arms. And in the shadow of the film, he still enlightens us.

Intimate portrait, Mingus Erectus is a film on the process of creating music, where we simultaneously discover the work of an artist and how it was conceived.

At the beginning

Mingus Erectus is poem collection written by Noel Balen, a declaration of love in 30 texts and 4 defintions, to Charles « Chazz » Mingus. In the jazz poetry tradition, he decides to adapt 14 of the texts as songs and to make a record that would accompany the collection. Then, he calls upon Etienne Gauthier and they invite a galaxy of talents to offer their voice or a solo on the compositions. And they deliver a record of 18 tracks that is released with the book, edited by the Castor Astral Editions.

The Director

Passionate about photography since always, Amaury Voslion directed in 1995 his first short film L'espace d'un instant. He then directed four other shorts Troisième oeil, Trouble, N.Y, Jules & Romy. In 2005, Magnificat Films and TPS entrusted him with the direction of his first television film "Lumière", with Philippe Nahon, Manuel Blanc, Anne Roussel et Florence Loiret Caille. His great mastery of the image and his strong sense of aesthetics led him to produce clips, corporate films and commercials internationally and especially in China, for clients such as WWF, McDonalds or Air France. He is currently developing his first fiction feature film.

More information
Perspective Films
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Amaury Voslion

Technical data

Format Documentary / 75’ / HD / 5.1 / France / 2019
Director Amaury Voslion
Amaury Voslion and Noël Balen
Music composer
Etienne Gauthier and Noël Balen
Narrators Irène Jacob, Viktor Lazlo, Annick Tangorra, Jean-Luc Debattice, Michel Jonasz, Kohndo, Mike Laad, David Linx, Passi, Dominique Pinon, Thomas de Pourquery, Arthur Ribo
Musicians Philip Catherine (guitares), Ricky Ford (sax ténor), Steve Potts (sax soprano), Géraldine Laurent (sax alto), Stéphane Belmondo (trompette), David Enhco (trompette), Glenn Ferris (trombone), Michel Portal (clarinette basse), Bojan Z (piano), Thomas Enhco (piano), Jacky Terrasson (fender rhodes), Emmanuel Bex (orgue), Marius Atherton (guitare funky), Danny Kendrick (batterie), Etienne Gauthier (claviers, piano, batterie, programmations), Noel Balen (contrebasse)
Gaëlle Jones - Perspective Films
Coproduction AM Art Films
With the support of SACEM
La Culture avec la Copie Privée
In patnership with
Le Castor Astral
With the support of La Galerie 24B
Duration  01:15:18
Selections & Festivals
A l'est du nouveau 2019

Rouen, France

FIEC 2019 International Film Festival Uruguay

Montevideo, Uruguay

Le FIFA 2020 International Art Film Festival

Montréal, Canada

Mediawave 2019 Film and Music Festival

Budapest, Hungary

AM Art Films