Mekas’s fourth major diary film was shot in 1977, the third year of his daughter Oona’s life, in which they spend time in New York and visiting his 90-year-old mother in Lithuania.
“Filmed in 1977, edited in 1979. These reels of my film diaries contain the film ‘notes’ taken during the calendar year 1977, arranged chronologically. The film is divided into six parts. The first part takes place in New York. We see a lot of home life and the city. We see a lot of our daughter Oona whose third year of life this is. Some other subjects: Peter’s Concert (Peter Kubelka); A visit to Marie Deren (Maya’s mother); St. Patrick’s Parade; Spring in Central Park; etc. The second, very brief part, takes place in Sweden, visiting Anna Lena Wibom. The third part takes place in Lithuania. Myself, my wife Hollis, and our 2-1/2 year old daughter Oona visit my mother on the occasion of her 90th birthday. Oona meets her young cousins, we drink home made beer, we walk through the woods, gather mushrooms and wild strawberries, we fool around. The fourth part is Austria, visiting Peter Kubelka and Hermann Nitsch in Prinzendorf. We taste Hermann’s wine, we talk to Peter’s donkeys, we visit Pater Nicolaus in Kremsmuenster, and then we go to Italy, with Peter, in pursuit of Michelangelo’s wine, Canaiola. The sixth part is back in New York; a visit to Willard Van Dyke, upstate; Oona’s third birthday; a fire on Broome Street; more home scenes; the beginning of winter storms. It’s a diary film but also it is a meditation on the theme of Paradise. It is a letter to Oona; to serve her, some day, as a distant reminder of how the world around her looked during the third year of her life – a period of which there will be only tiny fragments left in her memory – and to provide her with a romantic’s guide to the essential values of life – in a world of artificiality, commercialism, and bodily and spiritual poison.”—Jonas Mekas.