Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Off the Grid












Off the Grid is a heartfelt film about a bunch of bumbles living in New Mexico, in the middle of the desert. The film shows the lives of people who live Off the Grid; 




Off the Grid is defined by Urban Dictionary as - 


 1) Living without using the services of public or private utility companies (grids) such as electric, gas, or water, by generating and providing for one's needs such as by using solar power, etc. 

2) One who disdains all recordable common forms of commerce, such as eschewing any form of credit extension, banking services or reportable payroll activities, using only cash so as to avoid any traceable transactions, e.g., living completely 'underground.'))  


It is easy to overlook or gossip about people who live in an alien community: 



"Look at what they are doing!"

"They can't do that!"

"You can't live there!"

"Look at those Dharma Bums!"

But what is needed to live freely is defined in different ways; some people want absolute freedom, to live like they want to live, and do what they want to do; these people find life is best lived "Off the Grid".  Some people need the solitude only a place off the grid can offer. Some people live off the grid because they enjoy shooting guns. Some find Off the Grid the safest place to protect themselves from their former dangerous lives.  Some live off the grid because they fear society will brain wash their kids.
There is danger in living off the grid. Drugs are common here. And the law is the law of the people, vigilante old west style.
But without a full portrait, we are left arrogant. Jeremy and Randy Stulberg do a fine job of presenting these people objectively.  The people of the mesa are given a fair space to share their free formed lives.  





8 turnips out of a possible 10















Criteria Description
Points Awarded
Points
Possible
1. Avoids Preaching VictimhoodAre solutions proposed along with the problems identified.
5
5
2. Documentary is not
a set up
Avoids doing the Michael Moore Approach to
documentary.
5
5
2. Flow The author keeps you going and motivates you to
keep reading
5
5
3. Shares a definit POV
Transparent in Political Allegences
One can easily tell the POV of the author. The author shares where they are coming from.
5
5
4. Digesteable by Lay People One does not need a degree in Political Science or History to understand the book.
5
5
5. UsefulnessWas the book Useful?
5
5
6. Movie DesignDocumentary is laid out well… the scenes add up to a story told.
5
5
8. Introduction Author Notes contriube to the overall reading. Author shares the motivation that was there to write book.
Author outlines the evidence collected in telling
the tale.


0
5
8. Word ChoiceHow well does the Narrator Communicate vs
how the people interviewed share their POV.
2.5
5
10. Sparking Interest in ResearchDirector gets you interested in researching the subject
presented in the book. Quotes outside authors and their material.
5
5
11. Desire to share with othersThe Movie is rewarding enough to share with a friend without a fear of embarrasment.
5
5
Notes
47.5
55
0.863636


Links to Movie:
Smithsonian Interview about Living off the Grid
West Texas News on Living off the Grid
How to Live off the Grid
Off the Grid Survival 
The Movie on IMDB


 

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