6.5/10 Centered on America’s largest retirement community, The Villages, takes us into Florida (where else?) to look at four distinct people (one couple, two singles) and their struggles to find happiness in this “Disneyland for adults”. The idea behind the documentary, along with how well we get to know its subjects within its quick run time is impressive and shows great potential for its 24-year-old director Lance Oppenheim, making his feature length film debut here. Oppenheim being from Florida himself helps his grasping of the material but the fact that such a young man is tackling a documentary filled with nothing but senior citizens was something I enjoyed. If a senior citizen would have made this, their own biases and life experience surely would have greatly changed the outcome of the final product. Yet for a young director looking at these elderly folks, he has a fresh perspective, undaunted by the jaded wear and tear of age. Speaking of the wear and tear of age, when we are young we tend to think that people decades older than us have it together. They are or have been married, have had kids, traveled, saved money, etc. This documentary shows that no matter how old you get, some people never have it together. They are divorced or constantly single, their marriage is on the rocks and hanging by a thread, they don’t even have a home and live out of a car, have virtually no money saved for retirement, etc. Many people make poor decisions their entire life and wonder why things didn’t work out near the end. Others just have bad luck and long for a love they will never find. The best part of this documentary are these eye opening realizations. As a young man who is a fan of old people (as long as they aren’t behind the wheel of a car), I was drawn to the subject matter and reminded of these truths. No matter how young or old we are, we all want to be loved, feel safe and have freedom. As for what didn’t work as well, the documentary is a little dry. After a great opening highlighting the beauty of The Villages and all of its recreational activities, the doc slows down a bit as we follow these four senior citizens. Not that any of their stories are boring (they aren’t) but four old people talking isn’t the most exciting hour and twenty minutes of your life. As interesting as the film was, it is a one-time film that there is no need to ever revisit, lacking replayability. Even though I got something out of it, many younger audiences may struggle to connect with the film (even though I surely did). The film made me wonder about other people in The Village and if others may have been more interesting or exciting in their stories. In the end, this is a fine one-time documentary with an interesting idea and solid direction. Just don’t expect something enthralling or breath taking like the last documentary I reviewed, “Assassins”. Keep your expectations in check and hopefully you’ll get something out of this unique experience.

#InGodWeRust / #MusicByTheVillagePeople / #TheVillageIdiot / #TheFloridaReject / #SeniorCitizensArrest / #AndSoItSlows

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