Harry Benson: Shoot First
Directed by Justin Bare, Matthew Miele
USA | 87 min. | English (Dutch subtitled)
Full of wonderful and truly legendary images, Harry Benson brings us a new documentary: Shoot First, a true and honest portrait of the man behind many iconic photographs. A man who almost gave up everything for the ultimate picture, because 'a beautiful picture can never be taken back'. Wrapped in self-mockery he puts things into perspective and browses through his own 86-year-old workaholic life, experiences and creative work.
After much insistence Scottish photographer Harry Benson was persuaded to join The Beatles on their first tour in the US in 1964. The pictures Benson took became legendary: they were all lively and at the same time intimate photos and the start of a career filled with iconic images. Bensons lens witnessed historical moments, such as the assassinations of Robert F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King and John Lennon, and got very close to the most inaccessible artists of the 20th century, such as Andy Warhol, Truman Capote and Michael Jackson. But Benson also traveled to refugee camps in Somalia, infiltrated and witnessed KKK meetings and managed to sneak behind the gates of the IRA. However, the photographer paid a price for his full and exciting career.
The story told by his pictures is a story of historical moments and characters, but also the story of Benson's life and personality. With a considerable pinch of self-mockery, empathy for others and self-reflection, Benson browses through recent history using his controversial work.
Director Justin Bare, Matthew Miele
Production company Quixotic Endeavors
Editing Justin Bare, Heather Silverman
Producer Justin Bare, Heather Silverman
Cinematography Justin Bare
Music Mario Grigorov