Minimalism: A Documentary About Important Things is a film I don’t normally watch. First of all – it’s a documentary and it does not contain much of scientific material considering cosmos, dinosaurs or fluffy animals. I found it because of… facebook advert, however absurd it sounds. The advert was about a bag which the authors of the film used while promoting their book through the entire US for 10 months straight.
The idea of simplicity and minimalism was always kind of cool, but not enough to actually get closer to the idea. The film was supposed to give me an insight into such way of life and I did not get what I’d expected. Nevertheless, it was something that got me thinking about my life and how exactly I can declutter my tiny apartment and, through that, my mind.
The film was giving minimalism to the very edge of it. It showed people who gave up almost everything and lived in their small homes with only a handful of the most necessary things. I was as sceptical as I could at that moment. It indeed was pretty beautiful to be gotten rid of everything, be living on so little and enjoy life. However, it suggested living with people because it is the most important. And there was introvert me, disagreeing completely.
Moreover, they showed the consequences of overproduction. And it got me the most. The amount of stuff thrown away and not even bothered to be repaired, the clothes destroyed on purpose so the company (already wealthy as hell) did not waste their money, the garbage one person creates every year. The statistics are devastating. The number of things we buy that we don’t really use and then after a while just throw away is enormous. And no one notices. It is just the way it is. Neither thinking about it nor seeing any other way of doing it. Humanity runs so fast, trying to catch “the best” in their lives, the career, the family…; we actually don’t stop and wonder if it does make us happy.
They defined the life as a template everyone follows. I never could find the right word for it and that one fits just right! Never wanted to follow the “normal way of life” as if: graduate – find a job – marry – get a mortgage – build a house – have kids – retire – die. I simply hate this idea. Ever since primary school, I was afraid about my future, because the future everyone keeps talking about doesn’t fit my own goals. I never wanted kids. I never wanted marriage and owing money to the bank until the end of my days. No. I wanted to read books, watch films and travel. I wanted something more than that. And this was finally the moment this film actually drew my attention. They kept talking about how much life depends on people around us and how much people depend on things instead. There is something very familiar about it, isn’t it? At least for me. Check it out:
Right? I am forever crazy in love with Fight Club. I love Palahniuk’s critical look at reality and modern life and how edgy his books can be. Fincher got to his story even more and I love both book and the film equally. The idea behind Tyler Durden’s speech was very accurate and I’d love to follow but I’m not as drastic and I’m not exactly going to explode my home and live in some abandoned hovel.
I called Minimalism film “Fight Club For Chickens”. It quite fits. It gently explains how to make the difference in your life but without destroying everything you got used to, only slowly giving up things which don’t hold value in your life.
For the purpose of ecology and realisation, I want every single person to watch this film. It isn’t a genius piece of art or anything for that matter, but it definitely points out some mistakes people make and the consequences of them. Just give them a try and don’t be this completely ignorant asshole ruining the Earth.
But returning to the subject from the top: is it possible to be into minimalism and be a collector kind of geek?
Let’s describe the given example:
Subject has an irrational tendency to buy books which she does not have time to read. The books are then left untouched on shelves because the subject has a great sense of belonging. Furthermore, the subject tends to buy Funko POP! figurines which increased recently and she has quite a comic book collection. She also has plenty of film posters that she does not really make use of. She has a box of other geek related things which were completely forgotten in the last year or so.
I am a terrible hoarder. I love my books greatly and I can’t imagine parting with them. Actually, I can’t wait when I get all of them together and see how they look. And then, I do enjoy collecting Funko Pops. I decided not to buy all of them (who has money on that) but only ones I enjoy both as a character and the design. Once I had an idea to buy all the Deadpools but the money I had to spend wasn’t worth it. Especially since plenty of ‘Pools designs weren’t really nice looking. This was a conscious and good decision and now I look at my home and I started thinking – what don’t I need? Definitely my posters. They don’t necessarily have special value to me. I love the films they represent but I’m not planning to start in Guinness record for having the most things in a certain subject. I’m slowly selling them, one by one. Pretty nice feeling, especially since I can earn some. I also try to say goodbye to my unused bags. I used to enjoy them but they have a flaw I cannot overcome.
My books though? No way I’m giving them away. Sure I do have a few I’d like to sell because I don’t really need them but 99% of stories I read I want with me no matter if I’ll read them again or not. The same goes for my Pops. Since I already buy only a selection and I do not think I’ll sell them anytime soon. In the film, they were talking about having like 3 or 5 shirts and “all of them are favourite. I have like 30 fandom shirts and ALL OF THEM ARE MY FAVOURITES. Until they are not torn in two, I shall wear them. But I try not to buy more. Only when they are crazy awesome. I try to keep small from the other way.
Well, I believe there is a way to keep things small and it is a good way of living, especially when you have a renovation going. If you can’t put anything in your apartment, maybe it is time to stop and look around. Are these memorabilia actually make you happy? Or is this action figure is close to your heart? Every person has at least a thing they bought out of an impulse, with no second thought. New Year’s just on, maybe it’s a nice time to think about it a little and get your life less cluttered?
It’s your call, I made mine. And seriously, watch that film.