Last week, KB and I had an opportunity to see filmmaker Mark Wexler’s new documentary “How to Live Forever.” This week (or as soon as possible), you should do the same. Check out the trailer:
Despite the film’s (and humanity’s) obsession with death, “How to Live Forever” is more about life and how we as humans choose to live it. Going into the film, KB was nervous the documentary might come across as preachy or bursting with an agenda. The film does neither of these things, instead choosing to show many different people from numerous walks of life, each sharing their own philosophies on how to get the most out of whatever amount of years they’re given. For some, their secret is exercising every day and avoiding red meat; for others, it’s smoking as much as possible and regularly enjoying a pint. And remarkably, even though each side contradicts the other, the film manages to make both views seem right.
Sparked by the death of his mother, Wexler spent three years traveling the world and interviewing people about their thoughts on achieving two things most humans hope for: to live as long as possible and get the most out of our time here. From senior celebrities (Ray Bradbury and Phyllis Diller) to members of the science community (biogerontologist Aubrey de Grey and “Guru Giggler” Dr. Madan Kataria) to everyday people (the citizens of Okinawa, Japan and “LA Weekly” food critic Jonathan Gold), “How to Live Forever” is filled with many different theories on how to cheat (or at least prolong) death. And of course, the ones filled with booze, sex and laughter come across as the most appealing. The ones filled with daily exercise and puréed vegetable drinks? Not so much.
But that’s exactly what’s great about the documentary, that it doesn’t kowtow to any one view or answer. Like life itself, the philosophy of “whatever works for you is fine by me” is the overall message of “How to Live Forever.” And isn’t that just as it should be? Because, in the end, how each of us inevitably meet our maker is far less important than how we lived our lives up until that one fateful moment.
Learn how to live forever here, then head out to your local theater and learn how others have chosen to do it as well.
I wanna be Buster,