Maguy Marin: Time to Act takes acting and dance to a new level revealing her genius as a choreographer through the camera lens of her son, David Mambouch.

Mambouch’s 105-minute-long film begins with a naked dance and an image of Marin playfully baring her swollen belly before she gives birth to him. It then chronicles thirty-seven years of her creative process, alongside his journey from crib to camera.

The film’s title illustrates Marin’s quest to leave a worthy legacy through her art and lifestyle before it’s too late. She first dealt with mortality when her father died at the same time she produced her first masterpiece, May B. Based on Becket’s Endgame, it deals with ageing and death. It still hits home almost forty years after it opened in 1981.

Mambouch’s focus on this tour de force, matching his own lifespan, makes an impact so powerful that it almost overshadows Marin’s other productions, each of which pushes the envelope even further. Marin’s work is fearless, raw, and powerful. It’s politically and socially motivated and connected.

Mambouch follows her with his camera as she shares her knowledge and wisdom with her company that lives, eats, works and plays together. He comments on her insistent rhythmic routines, striving for perfection with performers in loose garments, caked in clay to achieve the lined fragility of ageing. He becomes part of Marin’s legacy. He’s even allowed to film her intimate, personal moments as she tours the world, sharing ideas with others of like mind.

Marin shows, and her son records the gutsy reality of how good art reflects real life and its relation to the mundane and death.

Marin has much to say, and she says it loudly through Time to Act, in French. But there are subtitles and a rewind button, if necessary.

Maguy Marin: Time to Act screens as part of the digital offerings at this year’s Vancouver International Film Festival from September 24 through October 7. Visit viff.org for tickets and information.