Search - Plagues & Pleasures on the Salton Sea on DVD


Plagues & Pleasures on the Salton Sea
Plagues Pleasures on the Salton Sea
Actors: John Waters, Sonny Bono, Friends of Dean Martinez
Directors: Chris Metzler, Jeff Springer
Genres: Special Interests, Educational, Documentary
NR     2007     1hr 13min

Fabulously offbeat and refreshingly upbeat, this lovable film gets friendly with the natives of the Salton Sea an inland ocean of massive fish kills, rotting resorts, and 120 degree nights located just minutes from urban S...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: John Waters, Sonny Bono, Friends of Dean Martinez
Directors: Chris Metzler, Jeff Springer
Genres: Special Interests, Educational, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Health, Educational, Docurama, Science & Technology
Studio: NEW VIDEO GROUP
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 09/25/2007
Original Release Date: 01/01/2007
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 1hr 13min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 11
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Bizarre and educational!! A strange place in the California
Nathan Andersen | Florida | 04/15/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Plagues and Pleasures on the Salton Sea is a rarity -- a film about an (apparent) ecological disaster and the strange and remarkable and funny stories and lifestyles that built themselves around it. The Salton Sea was created in about 1905 when the Colorado River was diverted to irrigate farms nearby and the runoff formed a lake in the Salton Sink, just 20 miles off the coast of Palm Springs. In the '50s it was promoted aggressively as a tourist spot and real estate boomed -- but then due to a number of factors (including the fact that excessive heat in the summer kills off hundreds of thousands of fish every year, leaving a bad smell) the Sea was mostly abandoned -- leaving only the hardy and stubborn, and many of them are cool and odd ducks: a former Hungarian revolutionary named Hunky Dory; an old man who likes to let it all hang out; the game warden; the real estate mogul who expects the boom to come soon; families who have come to escape inner city L.A.

The film does an excellent job providing a portrait of the wildlife (both human and otherwise) that surrounds the sea, and catalogues the contradictory reasons why they stay -- it is funny, poignant, bizarre and engaging, and the narration by John Waters hits just the right tone. It dispells some of the many myths that surround the Salton Sea (the fish are NOT poisonous, the lake is NOT toxic -- birds die from the bacteria that come to eat the fish that die because of a lack of oxygen in the salty water when it gets very hot) -- but perhaps more importantly exposes the existence of this strange and remarkable place, a testament simultaneously to our lack of foresight and to our ingenuity in making the best of unforeseen circumstances. The style of the film is spot-on -- with music and titling and other effects that give the film a retro-California-in-the-'50s feel.

If you've caught this doc on cable and enjoyed it, you ought to check out the dvd -- which is expanded a bit over the tv version: it includes more on the local life, is a bit more "salty," and definitely more memorable."
Awesome!
Beachhead | Oceanside, CA | 07/08/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I just saw this documentary on Independent Film Channel and it blew me away! I never knew about the Salton Sea until now. A place I'll have to see for myself. A failed utopia in the typical progress happy colors of the 50's and 60's turned into a stinking body of water with the hollow walls of those hotels and stores from those better days as hurting reminders how perfect it once was. This film expplains how it came into existence and why it went downhill. The focus is also on the people who live there today and how they deal with the masses of rotting fish and dying birds which die in the sea every summer...and about the hope the people still have for the old times to return one day...
Great music by Friends Of Dean Martinez and narrated by John Waters."
Great movie!
Kris Murphey | Santa Fe, NM United States | 12/26/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is a great overview of the Salton Sea history and culture. The people there will stay in your mind and you may find yourself drawn down for a visit! Excellent music and use of photographs, and narration from John Waters. I've seen it a dozen times and still love it."
The strangest place I've never been to
Scott J. Regner | Nottingham, Maryland USA | 01/03/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I rented this and then bought it--this is a really interesting DVD regarding the Salton Sea in southern California, how it was created 100 or so years ago BY MISTAKE, how they tried to promote and develop it, it's heyday in the '50's and '60's, and it's consistent decline into an ecological disaster since then. Couple that with all the really interesting, very individualistic folks who for some reason still live there, and add in John Waters narrating and presto--Hello Dali!
This is a very strange and wonderful documentary--it grows on you like a fungus"