Saturday, February 18, 2006

Pet Project

by Errol Morris

Errol Morris’ The Gates of Heaven tells the story of several pet cemetaries in California and through that device it allows us to meet several fascinating people. Morris precisely constructs the documentary out of a series of interviews with people who talk about the animals in their lives. But they’re not really talking about their animals, but themselves and what they believe in. The film is deceivingly simple but as it progresses you see more and more. Everything is significant in the frame and you start to notice where people are sitting, what is on the desk, the wall and their environment. People are fascinating to watch and Morris gives his interview subjects time to be themselves and draws the story out of them truthfully and with respect.

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