Actor: Michael Reynolds
Genres: Special Interests, Documentary
NR     2008     1hr 30min

Garbage Warrior is a feature-length documentary film telling the epic story of maverick US architect Michael Reynolds and his fight to introduce radically sustainable housing. An extraordinary tale of triumph over bureaucr...  more »


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Movie Details

Actor: Michael Reynolds
Genres: Special Interests, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Special Interests, Documentary
Studio: Morningstar Entertainment
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 11/11/2008
Original Release Date: 01/01/2008
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2008
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 1hr 30min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 5
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

Movie Reviews

Powerful story of vision & persistance!
Narz | Santa Cruz, CA | 08/05/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"As someone who's been interested in & involved with the sustainability movement for a long time now Mike Reynolds (the "hero" of this documentary) is the type of individual I wish I could have crossed paths with, worked with & learned from in person! This film documents his evolutionary journey from his first buildings in the New Mexico desert to his entrance into the legal arena facing an uphill battle to pass a bill that would allow architects the freedom to experiment with building designs in a controlled environment, to make mistakes & learn from them. Michael presents a compelling case, both to stodgy legislators as well as the audience that this is not only a good idea but absolutely necessary. The essence of his message is that we must redesign society (not just the building codes) to be able to adapt forcefully & gracefully to rapid change. It's a story about unexpected obstacles and the power of an adaptable & persistent spirit in overcoming them. The film takes us to India's Andaman Islands where Mr. Reynolds uses his unconventional building technique to rebuild a community devastated by tsunami and demonstrates how swift positive change can be when not hampered by ideological resistance and red tape. The pacing & flow of the movie are perfect, the musical score is great as well, complimentary to the action & powerful without being overwhelming (or overdramatic). It is even humorous at times like the "romantic" tune playing while Mike's newfound ally (a converted knight for his cause from within the system) works her way through a sea of resistant & skeptical senators to help try to get his bill passed.

Garbage Warrior will not give you the latest cutting edge information about sustainable design (though it certainly is a great primer), nor is it a full biography of Mr. Reynolds (though it covers the period of his life relevant to the film superbly) or of the ins, outs & tangents of the Earthship movement. What it did do, for me, is whet my appetite for more & reminded me why I am interested in this type of thing to begin with. This movie is pure inspiration, what you do with it & where you take it is up to you!"
Inspiring and motivating movie
Jason A. Gagnon | Cobleskill, NY USA | 01/22/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Let me start with the reason for the missing star- there's alot of cursing in this movie. It makes sense coming out of the mouths it comes out of, but it does limit the audience for this incredible documentary. Earthships are cool, but if you have a twelve year old in your life that is interested in environmentalism, art, architecture and whatnot, this movie may just have a few too many f-bombs to show it to them.

Other than that, this is one heck of a great documentary!

You can't watch this movie without becoming immediately obsessed with Earthships. My wife and weren't even half way through this film when we had to start pausing it to discuss ways we might one day incorporate some of the ideas presented in this film into our own property.

The struggle against the local planning board will appeal to your inner libertarian.

Christopher Dowell | 04/10/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"What a visionary! Such courage & devotion to throw himself into designing & constructing incredible houses that just captivate you in awe! These homes are out of tires, bottles, cans, & glass & solar/wind power! The movie about this architect is so inspirational & motivating & it opens your eyes to bigger picture of corruption between politicians & certain organizations like the architectural society he was once part of & how much bs influence they have over politicians & the way we live! The 1 guy in the film that filibustered it was the same jackass that looked up at the camera earlier when the Garbage Warrior was making his rounds through the offices & meeting rooms of the State Assembly Building! When I saw him on the Senate floor calling the roster - I pointed him out to my friends who were also watching & belted out "That's your enemy right there! That a#%hole! Look what he's doing! He's filibustering the whole damned thing on purpose!"
In the end though, the Garbage Warrior won of course! Yaaaaaayyyyy!!!!
You must see this film!"
Architecture by Architect
Neil Sofia | Pacifica, California | 09/08/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I have been a licensed in California for 21 years and in the industry for 32 years. My practice is a small two man firm that specializes in residential projects. My wife recommended to me to watch this program on the Sundance Channel. I was so blown away that I had to have the DVD. Mike Reynolds is the type of Architect I would have loved to work for in my youth but never met. Knowing what it takes to due conventional residential architecture in the Bay Area, I was astounded to see his creations and his herculean journey through the Planning, Building and State Departments. In my book he is a heroic force in the future of self sufficient home design and truely one of the most inspiriational visionaries I have been exposed to since Frank Lloyd Wright. In my own particular way I have been studying alternative energy options since 1976 at graduate school and now live in a "conventional" home that has photovoltaic solar for power and light, as well as heat for my home office. I would recommend this articulate documentary to anyone interested in the potential for ultimate off-the-grid life style."