Tea Time

DVD Cover

New Filmmakers

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The Actors
Merry Fortune
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Robert Bernstein
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Sheila     Amy    

Tea Time
directed by Debra Cohen
with Merry Fortune and Robert Bernstein
Total Running Time: 20:46

It's time for tea... two friends meet for tea on a Sunday afternoon in an apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

I brought my own collection of tea bags to the scene and knew the variety in tea bags might stimulate conversation. I also felt confident knowing Merry and Robert from a community table at a vegan East Village restaurant that conversation would bubble up to the surface and flow.

But I didn't anticipate just how much witty back-and-forth banter would surface and just how playful the interaction between them would be in their largely unscripted roles.

'Tea Time' is a metaphor for a different way of being in time/another way to describe time. This concept grew organically for me as the filming day wore on, just as the film title itself became clear. As the film progresses the two friends settle in and slow down (and the camera angles slow down as well ;-] ). They choose, brew and sip tea, and discuss meditation, cats, politics and more - though Leo the cat just may be the star of the show. Conflict ensued behind the scenes and on camera and I did guide the process and made a variety of editing choices.

And once again they choose, brew and drink more tea. And before they know it, the day has gone by, and though not rushed anywhere, it's time to part.

It's dark outside, like a cup of black tea.

The 100th Monkey

Marion Woodman     Leonard Perlmutter

Tea Time was screened at Anthology Film Archives in the East Village in January, 2007, as part of the NewFilmMakers Winter 2007 New York Series (http://www.newfilmmakers.com).


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Last modified July 2023.