100UP is about centenarians who give meaning to life

100UP is about centenarians who give meaning to life

How does it feel to be a hundred and still cling to life? In the 100UP documentary, documentary filmmaker Heddy Honigmann makes a valiant attempt to portray seniors who still have something to offer.

Honigmann asks Raul (1918) from Peru why she still gets up every morning. Just to go to the hospital, he answered succinctly. He was a doctor in his working life and still provides his services at the local hospital. It keeps it going.

This actually applies to all seven heroes who have in common that they have lived for more than a hundred years. No matter how different their personalities all are, their profile is the same: they are professionals who have lived an intense life and ultimately built a good standard of living.

here and now

Honigmann (1951) has garnered more than her success in the field of documentaries. She is famous for


, which permeates the lives of soldiers deployed to United Nations peacekeeping missions. Hongman


She’s not really interested in what the people she portrayed have gone through. They mainly focus on their here and now survival mechanics.

She made an exception for Mathilde Freund (1916). Born in Vienna, she saw “Her Hitler” driving his car through the streets of Vienna and then fled to France and later to the United States. She can still be found daily in the halls of the local university where she takes film history lessons.

What all centenarians have in common is that the rolling still gives them something to keep. Viola Smith (1912) tells that she comes from a family of seven sisters, and that her father started a band with all the girls. She considers herself lucky to have played the drum kit from the start. “It made me energetic and mobile.” In fact, her daily workouts still testify to her exceptional agility.


Shirley Zusman (1915) worked as a therapist for people with sexual problems into old age. She thinks the most frustrating thing is that you can no longer do everything you always wanted to do. In a conversation with her little younger sister, one does not want to talk about the past (“remember when it was our mother’s birthday”). The other, Shirley, likes to talk about the past to incorporate those memories into the present.

The only Dutchman in this documentary is former Hague Olympian Hans Mayer (1916) who put his heart and soul into a movement he calls “the universal duties of man”. In addition to rights, we also have duties, he believes, such as caring for others and for the earth. We can still see him working on building a website. Or would his quest possibly take another hundred years before any of that appeared? “I’m much more optimistic,” he says.

Environmental Concerns

When asked about everyone’s vision of the future, others are less positive. They see the selfishness of people, but above all there is an interest in the future of the Earth and the degradation of the environment.

Reasonably vital aging is not for everyone. But continuing to search for meaning is the common denominator that emerges from all conversations. This movie is a tribute to life.


It is a nod to a BBC documentary series that began in 1963 and gathers participants in front of the camera every seven years. Original creator Michael Apted wanted to point out that by the age of seven a lot has already been fixed that will have an impact for the rest of life. Two years ago it came

63 August

from. Before


We have to be patient until 2026. Heddy Honigmann didn’t want to wait for that. She must have jumped to a hundred.

100UP by Heddy Honigmann presents seven images of people who have lived for a century with an infectious zest for life. The movie can be viewed in . format

Slicker Leeuwarden

. *** / A quiet movie that is not too surprising makes you happyك

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