Vernon, Florida (1981)

Genres - Culture & Society  |   Sub-Genres - Americana, Biography  |   Release Date - Oct 8, 1981 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 56 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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For his second documentary feature, Errol Morris originally set out to chronicle Vernon, FL, because it had the highest rate of a particular sort of insurance fraud -- dismemberment performed for profit -- than any other place in the country. Nothing of that original idea survives in the film itself. Instead, Morris seems perfectly content letting the camera roll in front of the other eccentrics he found there, using his trademark approach of simply letting his subjects do the talking themselves. Many of them exhibit unusually close relationships to animals, including a turtle keeper, a worm farmer, and most memorably, an extremely enthusiastic turkey hunter. Other highlights include a sermon offering a close reading on the significance of the word "therefore" and a couple with a jar of sand from White Sands, NM, that they insist, thanks to radiation, has begun to multiply.

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Keywords

small-town, eccentric, hunting, observations, slice-of-life, turkey [animal], turtle, worm [animal]