Can true happiness and success be measured by material possessions? What is the personal and global impact of our consumer culture? Is there an alternative?
Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things examines the many aspects of the growing “minimalist” movement that is challenging compulsory consumerism and seeking a different path.
The authors of two best-selling books on minimalism, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, take viewers on a road trip across America that reveals the core ideas behind minimalism and meets people who share their transformational stories.
Millburn and Nicodemus are friends from college who lived the corporate rat race only to find that it never really brought them happiness. Though their paychecks grew, the void in their lives remained the same. Each had their own personal breaking point that moved them away from the consumer lifestyle.
From architects, designers, and musicians, to businessmen, authors, and families, the film explores the ways that many different types of people are attempting to live simpler, more meaningful lives, and their varied motivations for doing so.
Among the leading voices in the minimalist movement the film visits with are: sociologist/author Juliet Schor, Zen Habit’s Leo Babauta, Becoming Minimalist’s Joshua Becker, neuroscientist/author Sam Harris, and Colin Beavan, aka “No Impact Man”. Each lends their experience living a minimalist life and delves into the environmental, social and psychological wake that is the result of compulsive consumerism.
Reviews and Festivals“A compelling subject to explore...takes a look at what it means to
radically scale down and de-emphasize the accumulation of ‘stuff’.”
– Chicago Tribune
“The Minimalists recount their experiments with simple living while showcasing like-minded reformers: couples who live in tiny houses, people committed to carbon-neutral living, the guy who travels full-time carrying everything he owns in a couple of shoulder bags.”
– Boston Globe
"Snippets of television and radio interviews reveal how the guys gradually shifted from unconscious consumption to intentional living...The variety of locations and viewpoints gives this program a freshness that will appeal to viewers looking to change their lives and pull back on consumerism."
- Booklist (ALA)
"An excellent overview of a growing movement that could prove to be the salvation of our society, not to mention the planet at large."
"RECOMMENDED. Minimalism doesn't proselytize or shove alternative values down viewers' throats, but it does make simplicity look awfully appealing."
“RECOMMENDED. Engaging documentary...Presenting sobering statistics and anecdotes about the damage stark materialism does to the planet and the individual; the minimalists also offer hope that we can change."
– Educational Media Reviews Online
“A panoramic view of [the minimalist] movement: what it is, why it is, and how it is all much bigger than just tossing all your stuff. The stories shared by people who have sought to break that chain for themselves had different reasons...but they all came to the same conclusion: ‘I believe my life could be better with less.’”
“A good window into the philosophy of minimalism and a worthy depiction of those who practice it. Minimalism is ultimately a documentary about people who care more about people than things, who prioritize quality over quantity, and who value environmental sustainability over the rank commercialism of consumer culture.”
• Most Inspirational Documentary, Orlando Film Festival
• Best Documentary, Los Angeles Art-House Film Festival
• Best Documentary & Best Feature, Fort McMurray International Film Festival
NYC Independent Film Festival
Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
Sedona Film Festival
Lone Star Film Festival
Raindance Film Festival
St Louis International Film Festival
Fargo Film Festival
Studio City International Film Festival
Cincinnati Film Festival
American Conservation Festival