Author Topic: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)  (Read 6729 times)

Stachey

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Yes I know...not a book... but an excellent documentary that most MMMers will find very interesting.  And it has a lot of interviews with authors like:

Leo from Zen Habits
The Minimalists
Tammy Strobel "You Can Buy Happiness...and it's Cheap"
Courtney Carver and her 330 project
to name a few

It's a very interesting film.  One thing I found shocking is that now apparently fashion retailers market 52 seasons per year to consumers and go to extreme lengths to encourage people to feel out of style from one week to the next.  It's shocking that they can find so many people gullible enough to believe that crap to make it profitable for them to constantly be changing out inventory.  And the toll that is taking on the environment when there is so much waste generated by these consuming drones.

There was also part of a speech from Jimmy Carter.  How many years ago was he president?  He was very forward thinking. 


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misshathaway

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #1 on: December 16, 2016, 06:41:38 AM »
+ My List, thanks for posting it.
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softy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2016, 09:18:44 PM »
i just watched this tonight and unfortunately wasn't a fan. there was something about it that felt superficial and inauthentic, and i'm not sure why. it felt like the spread of their message wasn't very organic, and they were almost sales-y with their push (which makes sense, one of the guys is a former mobile phone salesman). and the whole "i'm a hugger" thing felt kitschy. they filmed themselves giving talks, but there were no significant insights shared nor were there any deep or meaningful conversations between the minimalists and the people that came to their talks. the only thing they really featured from their talks was a guy going on about how great they were and how they had such wonderful personalities. it's not that i doubt that they're minimalists, but it feels like they're attempting to monetize minimalism for themselves in a way that slightly rubs me the wrong way.

i did find the sections on fashion and housing a bit interesting, but overall i felt like it was a waste of time.

i am curious to hear what other MMMers think, however.

Stachey

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2016, 11:01:08 AM »
They did concentrate too much on those two guys doing a book tour. 

What struck me most about the movie was that it had all these stunning scenes of nature, wonderful vistas with very little evidence of mankind's affect on nature.  Then it would switch to massive hordes of consuming drones all pushing to be in the front of the line at a store on Black Friday or something equally ridiculous.  And every single time they showed a mall or a parking lot, there was always garbage blowing around. 

The stark contrast between those two realities really struck home for me and given that the average age of the audience members on that book tour was about 75 clearly younger generations are not getting it. 

If we don't stop consuming the planet's resources at the rate we are the only view that any of us will see in the future will be garbage strewn parking lots.

So I think if this movie helps to convince more people about the many benefits of minimalism then it will have made a big difference in the world.
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FIRE_at_45

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2016, 11:53:33 AM »
I just watched this last night.  Here is the trailer if you want to take a 2 minute peek:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Co1Iptd4p4

I agree that the whole focus on the two dudes and their book tour was a bit much.  But their message of walking away from the big corporate salaries did resonate with me.  I have been driven my entire life by money.  In my 30`s I was quite ambitious.  If I was the guy in the suit in the corner office and the boss offered me a partnership I likely would have gone for it. 

The reality that you can live on less and be more happy is very appealing.  It was not the content per see that really got me but the realization that what I have been doing on my own may just be the right path.

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stoaX

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2016, 03:15:39 PM »
They did concentrate too much on those two guys doing a book tour. 

But aren't "those two guys" the ones who made the movie? 

calpolyjohn

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2017, 01:59:49 PM »
i just watched this tonight and unfortunately wasn't a fan. there was something about it that felt superficial and inauthentic, and i'm not sure why. it felt like the spread of their message wasn't very organic, and they were almost sales-y with their push (which makes sense, one of the guys is a former mobile phone salesman). and the whole "i'm a hugger" thing felt kitschy. they filmed themselves giving talks, but there were no significant insights shared nor were there any deep or meaningful conversations between the minimalists and the people that came to their talks. the only thing they really featured from their talks was a guy going on about how great they were and how they had such wonderful personalities. it's not that i doubt that they're minimalists, but it feels like they're attempting to monetize minimalism for themselves in a way that slightly rubs me the wrong way.

i did find the sections on fashion and housing a bit interesting, but overall i felt like it was a waste of time.

i am curious to hear what other MMMers think, however.

I have been following the minimalists (Josh and Ryan) for several years ever since I first found their blog.  I do agree with what you are saying.  They are very good at both spreading the message of minimalism and also making money for themselves in the process.  Sometimes that shines through, but overall I am glad I found their site and the message has made me believe in minimalism for my own life. 

Also, last I checked they don't make money through advertisements on their blog even though they get a ton of web traffic.  Instead, they use it to promote their books and the documentary. 

One other thing is that if you are already aware of minimalism or have been reading their work for a while, there is not much else to say about it.  We already know everything, just need to put it into practice and live it.  Similar to financial independence in that regard.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2017, 11:44:34 AM »
Browsing Netflix last night, I came across the title for another doc on there about minimalism, happiness, freedom, voluntary simplicity (as well as involuntary simplicity), prioritizing, etc. It's been mentioned on this forum before, but wanted to point to it in case anyone here hasn't found it yet. It's called Happy. I really liked it, as it well reflected my experiences, decisions, and perspectives. Where there was choice, and the choices made brought happiness, I found it so affirming.

Stachey

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2017, 10:14:42 PM »
Browsing Netflix last night, I came across the title for another doc on there about minimalism, happiness, freedom, voluntary simplicity (as well as involuntary simplicity), prioritizing, etc. It's been mentioned on this forum before, but wanted to point to it in case anyone here hasn't found it yet. It's called Happy. I really liked it, as it well reflected my experiences, decisions, and perspectives. Where there was choice, and the choices made brought happiness, I found it so affirming.


Another vote for this documentary.  Saw it awhile ago and it was very good.
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lifejoy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2017, 11:19:39 AM »
I saw it, and did not like it very much. I felt like Joshua and Ryan are capitalizing the idea of minimalism. It felt so salesy and I felt the movie jumped around a lot.

That being said I enjoyed the fact that they exposed to the viewer a lot of bloggers I really like. Such as Leo Babauta.

DailyGrindFree

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2017, 12:00:18 PM »
I saw it, and did not like it very much. I felt like Joshua and Ryan are capitalizing the idea of minimalism. It felt so salesy and I felt the movie jumped around a lot.

That being said I enjoyed the fact that they exposed to the viewer a lot of bloggers I really like. Such as Leo Babauta.

I watched it a couple of weeks ago and I wasn't as impressed as I thought I would be. I have been trying to simplify my life and have been reading some of their articles for awhile now. I get the main idea and awesomeness behind it. But they definitely look like they are trying to capitalize the the idea of minimalism like you said. It may not be but it looks that way. Having said that this doesn't take away anything from the idea of minimalism. 


Browsing Netflix last night, I came across the title for another doc on there about minimalism, happiness, freedom, voluntary simplicity (as well as involuntary simplicity), prioritizing, etc. It's been mentioned on this forum before, but wanted to point to it in case anyone here hasn't found it yet. It's called Happy. I really liked it, as it well reflected my experiences, decisions, and perspectives. Where there was choice, and the choices made brought happiness, I found it so affirming.

I think I have seen it while back. I remember the name but I cannot remember the details. I will look for it and add it to my list. Thanks.

kkenn

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2017, 11:50:25 AM »
I watched it and as the documentary wore on, I kept expecting it to go a level deeper.  It stayed very much on the surface while following the 2 main guys around.  I enjoyed the parts where the other contributors reflected.

I will have to give 'Happy' a watch.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2017, 11:53:49 AM »
I watched Minimalism and got bored very quickly.  I do not feel like I learned anything new nor was I exposed to any ideas I haven't seen in many other places.

But, I've seen a lot of my friends on facebook raving about the documentary.  There are some large minimalism facebook groups that are growing due to the popularity of the documentary.  So I guess it might be a good intro to an idea that is new to some people. 

I will look into the "Happy" documentary.  Perhaps it will be more illuminating.

lifejoy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2017, 02:21:56 PM »
As I mentioned above, I didn't love the movie.

But I'm enjoying their book: "Everything that remains". Kind of gets me into the minimalism mindset, which is always nice.

FIRE_at_45

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2017, 03:16:01 PM »
I've spent the past few days trying to downsize.  I suck at it.  It would be easier for me if everything was destroyed in a freak accident.  I don't think I would miss any of it but I have trouble throwing things out.  I don't know what it is.  Sometimes it's that something has value.  I'm trying to sell those things on Craigslist.  Other times it something someone gave me. 

I did throw out a lot of stuff but I still have too much stuff. 
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lifejoy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2017, 03:56:07 PM »
I've spent the past few days trying to downsize.  I suck at it.  It would be easier for me if everything was destroyed in a freak accident.  I don't think I would miss any of it but I have trouble throwing things out.  I don't know what it is.  Sometimes it's that something has value.  I'm trying to sell those things on Craigslist.  Other times it something someone gave me. 

I did throw out a lot of stuff but I still have too much stuff.

Your homework: read "The lifechanging magic of tidying up" by Marie Kondo

It helped my mom, who looooooooves saving things FOREVER. So I feel it could help anyone ;)

FIRE_at_45

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2017, 04:41:56 PM »
Thanks, I think you are the second person to recommend that book.  It's not all bad.  I'm down to a handful of boxes.  The boxes contain some useful stuff:

-taxes and documents, looking for work records (2 moving boxes)
-backup CD's of kids pictures and some videos (shoe box)
-Christmas decorations (2 boxes)
-photo albums (1 box)

Then I have 4 huge storage containers full of sports stuff and kids stuff. 

I listed 9 things on CL and plan to give away all the kids books (they are fine with this too).  I'll do that for their annual book swap at school.  That way they can pick up a few novels they want to read.

I'm getting better at throwing out stuff like credit card bills and other crap that seems to accumulate. I hate getting the free paper.  I use it to line the compost bin.  I should put a sign on my mailbox. 

I wrote some things down so I can think about them and hopefully come to terms with getting rid of them.  I also found a few things that are really useful for camping (bear bells, wet sacks).  I literally didn't know I owned them.

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lifejoy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2017, 05:13:51 PM »
Thanks, I think you are the second person to recommend that book.  It's not all bad.  I'm down to a handful of boxes.  The boxes contain some useful stuff:

-taxes and documents, looking for work records (2 moving boxes)
-backup CD's of kids pictures and some videos (shoe box)
-Christmas decorations (2 boxes)
-photo albums (1 box)

Then I have 4 huge storage containers full of sports stuff and kids stuff. 

I listed 9 things on CL and plan to give away all the kids books (they are fine with this too).  I'll do that for their annual book swap at school.  That way they can pick up a few novels they want to read.

I'm getting better at throwing out stuff like credit card bills and other crap that seems to accumulate. I hate getting the free paper.  I use it to line the compost bin.  I should put a sign on my mailbox. 

I wrote some things down so I can think about them and hopefully come to terms with getting rid of them.  I also found a few things that are really useful for camping (bear bells, wet sacks).  I literally didn't know I owned them.

Sounds like you're doing really well!

For your paper documents, can you digitize some of them and upload them to the cloud as a backup?

FIRE_at_45

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2017, 06:33:11 PM »
I can probably do some of that too.  I could actually take some of it to work and make it into a PDF.  Hmm, I should make that an action item.

Some of the other stuff I just need to get rid of since I have not used it for years!
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MasterStache

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #19 on: February 23, 2017, 05:37:10 AM »
I watched it a couple weeks ago out of sheer boredom. It was ok. Like others I felt it was too sale oriented. Not something I would recommend.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #20 on: February 23, 2017, 09:14:03 AM »
With themes overlapping the one of Happy mentioned earlier, The Babushkas of Chernobyl is the ultimate study in minimalism, as well as other MMM-related topics as outlined in my post here: https://brainquirkcash.com/2017/02/23/the-babushkas-of-chernobyl/

lifejoy

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #21 on: February 24, 2017, 09:05:58 AM »
With themes overlapping the one of Happy mentioned earlier, The Babushkas of Chernobyl is the ultimate study in minimalism, as well as other MMM-related topics as outlined in my post here: https://brainquirkcash.com/2017/02/23/the-babushkas-of-chernobyl/

Woah. Cool movie recommend.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #22 on: February 28, 2017, 09:40:04 AM »
I saw it, and did not like it very much. I felt like Joshua and Ryan are capitalizing the idea of minimalism. It felt so salesy and I felt the movie jumped around a lot.

That being said I enjoyed the fact that they exposed to the viewer a lot of bloggers I really like. Such as Leo Babauta.
[/quote
I find that interesting because to me I find Leo really salesy. I loved his book the power of less, but in interviews I get a bit of a cringe going when we talks about monetisation.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #23 on: February 28, 2017, 09:48:31 AM »
i just watched this tonight and unfortunately wasn't a fan. there was something about it that felt superficial and inauthentic, and i'm not sure why. it felt like the spread of their message wasn't very organic, and they were almost sales-y with their push (which makes sense, one of the guys is a former mobile phone salesman). and the whole "i'm a hugger" thing felt kitschy. they filmed themselves giving talks, but there were no significant insights shared nor were there any deep or meaningful conversations between the minimalists and the people that came to their talks. the only thing they really featured from their talks was a guy going on about how great they were and how they had such wonderful personalities. it's not that i doubt that they're minimalists, but it feels like they're attempting to monetize minimalism for themselves in a way that slightly rubs me the wrong way.

i did find the sections on fashion and housing a bit interesting, but overall i felt like it was a waste of time.

i am curious to hear what other MMMers think, however.

I have been following the minimalists (Josh and Ryan) for several years ever since I first found their blog.  I do agree with what you are saying.  They are very good at both spreading the message of minimalism and also making money for themselves in the process.  Sometimes that shines through, but overall I am glad I found their site and the message has made me believe in minimalism for my own life. 

Also, last I checked they don't make money through advertisements on their blog even though they get a ton of web traffic.  Instead, they use it to promote their books and the documentary. 

One other thing is that if you are already aware of minimalism or have been reading their work for a while, there is not much else to say about it.  We already know everything, just need to put it into practice and live it.  Similar to financial independence in that regard.

I feel most similarly to this post out of the rest. I too had been following them for some time, they even have a podcast which was fun for a little while, but like you, once you know it, you don't need to keep on going with the same.

I think the main point for all of us is, it just makes sense to put minimalism and high savings rates together. I can relate to Ryan and how there was just so much spending going on. This is really why the middle class have that struggle to get on top, they overspend, overconsume.

After their blog, podcast and now documentary, the thing the documentary showed which I hadn't noticed before was their friendship and the dynamic of how they work together. I think the documentary is good for a beginner to the movement and I often recommend it as a starting point. Most people I find just aren't willing to give up their stuff, their bigger home, their cluttered life because they think they need it, just like people feel they need to spend so much more than we know they do.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #24 on: February 28, 2017, 06:35:14 PM »
Interesting point about Leo Babauta! I'll admit, I haven't seen many interviews with him so maybe that's why I'm not as turned off :)

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #25 on: March 25, 2017, 11:18:51 AM »
I was disappointed with the move. Not exactly sure why but perhaps it was because I was blown away by their TED talk


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GgBpyNsS-jU

it is only 15 or so mins, so  for those who thought the move was a little too drawn out , that it  didn't emphasize minimalizm or their story check it out.

« Last Edit: March 25, 2017, 11:20:52 AM by MStangRacer »

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #26 on: March 25, 2017, 01:11:43 PM »
I enjoyed it. Pretty good 1 hr watch. I also liked the documentary called Happy and it was about the scientific evidence of happiness.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #27 on: April 17, 2017, 02:09:10 PM »
I'm very attracted to minimalism and have read several books and blogs about it. I was excited when I heard about the movie, but didn't find it too enjoyable.  I did like the documentary Happy, that several people have mentioned.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #28 on: April 25, 2017, 07:48:02 PM »
I also wasn't really a fan. I put off watching it for a bit because I expected to be so inspired I'd be immediately throwing out all my worldly possessions. But it came across as quite sterile, and I feel didn't really delve into the why or how of minimalism. The guy with the hairdryer may have downsized his life, but his dining table probably cost more than all my second hand furniture put together. I think minimalism makes more sense as a side effect of pursuing financial independence, and not necessarily a cause in its own right. Though if it's one way to get people to consume less than I won't complain.

I've just started watching Happy, which I like more already due to using real life cases.

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #29 on: April 25, 2017, 08:40:11 PM »
I also wasn't really a fan. I put off watching it for a bit because I expected to be so inspired I'd be immediately throwing out all my worldly possessions. But it came across as quite sterile, and I feel didn't really delve into the why or how of minimalism. The guy with the hairdryer may have downsized his life, but his dining table probably cost more than all my second hand furniture put together. I think minimalism makes more sense as a side effect of pursuing financial independence, and not necessarily a cause in its own right. Though if it's one way to get people to consume less than I won't complain.

I've just started watching Happy, which I like more already due to using real life cases.

I don't agree with the materialism as part of minimalism.  You don't need 4 crappy chairs you own.  Just buy one sleek designer chair and that's it. 
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I watched the documentary a few weeks back. I think the basic message is good. The documentary was more about the personal relationship between Millburn and Nicodemus and their tour.

I think it would have been much better, if it had focused on what minimalism is and how to live it.

Solid 3 1/2 star movie about an interesting subject, but the movie itself was a bit bland and focused on the people rather than minimalism itself.

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This has finally made it onto Netflix in Germany so I'm planning on watching it over the weekend. Interested to see if I find it inspiring or if it'll make me want to run and hug all of my stuff and never let go!

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Thanks for these recommendations.  I'll give Minimalism a shot, and it sounds like Happy is right up my alley.

Zen Habits was the first blog I ever followed.  I really enjoyed it from 2011-2014.  Then, ~3 years ago he started trying to sell stuff, and I lost interest.  I may give him it another chance.  I've changed a lot in the last 3 years, so maybe I'll enjoy it again.
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I haven't seen the documentary, but off-and-on I've been following their blog and podcast for the last couple of years. I think that there's only so much you can really say on the subject of minimalism though, and if I had to offer criticism I'd say they can get a bit pretentious and self-absorbed at times.

But with that said, these guys have changed my life for the better and I'm glad they're out there doing what they do. I guess the take-home messages I've learned from them are:

- Get rid of your unnecessary belongings. Most of the stuff I used to own I never used and the clutter was having a net-negative effect on my psyche.
- Simplify your stupidly busy lifestyle. Having 100 hobbies and 1000 friends doesn't make you a fulfilled person. Focus on what and who are important.
- Streamline your digital consumption. No, you don't need to read the news every day to "stay informed".

If you haven't already, check 'em out. I can't imagine that the documentary offers anything that their blog doesn't already cover, so start by reading that. Their philosophy generally meshes well with Mustachianism.

Gumption

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The first few minutes were great, then it just fell flat on its face.
Someday, someone will do a documentary like this well.

I do agree, though in the idea that there is, well, a minimal amount that you can talk on the subject of minimalism.

I do not completely align with MMM, but, yes it did change my life for the better. It reminded me of why I enjoyed Thoreau so much.

I think once I got the message from Pete, it was clear, and I didn't need to keep digging.
Cut back to only what you need. Save/Invest enough until you get to 25x  annual expenses. Pull plug. Enjoy the moment.

onewayfamily

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #35 on: August 11, 2017, 08:18:10 AM »
It's funny when I saw this thread I thought the responses would be overwhelmingly positive, but I have to agree with some of the other posters in that I enjoyed this documentary less than I expected.

For me it boiled down to two main problems I think:
- the documentary wasn't that well made (i.e. it seemed a bit slow in parts and also a bit repetitive)
- the material is just too light (i.e. the ideas and main tenets of 'minimalism', at least as formulated by Millburn + Nicodemus, is just really quite a simple idea and doesn't really have enough meat to fill out a full-length documentary)

Overall the film was worth the watch though, as some of the interviews brought points in that I hadn't thought about before.
We FIRE'd at age 28 (me) and 29 (Mrs. OneWayFamily) and are now trying to travel to every country on Earth - it takes longer with 2 toddlers!

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stoaX

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Re: Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things (now on Netflix)
« Reply #36 on: August 17, 2017, 05:49:14 PM »


I do agree, though in the idea that there is, well, a minimal amount that you can talk on the subject of minimalism.



Thanks - this was my laugh for the day!