Picture of His Life
Director: Dani Menkin, Yonatan Nir | 74 min | 2019 | United States, Israel
“If your picture is not good enough, it’s because you’re not close enough.”
— Amos Nachoum
Fascinated by the most fearsome creatures on Earth, wildlife photographer Amos Nachoum has developed a unique approach: to go face to face with his subjects without any protection.
Over his decades-long career, Amos has swum with and photographed anacondas, giant leopard seals, great white sharks, orcas and crocodiles. Now, at the age of 65, he has decided to take on the one challenge that's so far evaded him: to swim with a polar bear.
Amos has tried before and barely escaped with his life. Into an environment being rapidly erased by a changing climate, the danger is real — perhaps more real than ever — but this will be Amos' last chance to get The Picture of His Life.
Director Yonatan Nir, who won Best International Director at Doc Edge 2017 for his 'My Hero Brother', first met Amos in 2004 at the Antibes Underwater Film Festival. Their friendship developed over the next 10 years, at which point Amos shared his plan. Yonatan and partner Dani Menkin, with whom Yonatan had made water-based doco 'Dolphin Boy' in 2011, decided to film it.
As Amos prepares to escape to the ominous tranquility of the Arctic Ocean, he contemplates what's driven him to the end of the world. After living through childhood abuse and war, swimming with a ferocious predator in a silent, cerulean realm may be the closest Amos will ever come to achieving real peace.
Accompanied by Emmy Award-winning cinematographer Adam Ravetch, whom Amos mentored early in the cinematographer's career, Amos dives.
Previous festival selections include:
IDFA, winner: Audience Choice Award for documentary
Syracuse International Film Festival