125: Gates of Heaven (1978)

Don’t worry, Donnatello. We’ll catch that hare and make a wabbit stew.

One minute it’s cheeky muppets, the next it’s full blown animals with legs, arms, and a multitude of functioning body parts.

Known as the “detective director” behind the lens of such important, weighty documentaries as The Thin Blue Line, Standard Operating Procedure and Mr Death, Errol Morris started out with particularly apolitical subjects. Roll on his first feature documentary Gates of Heaven.

Awkwardly tightroping on both sides of the pet cemetery debate, its a piece of work which is both enlightening and entertaining, if a little outmoded and slight by today’s grandiosely proportioned documentary standards, ironically set up by the visionary Morris himself.

All in all, an interesting character study of grief, fragility, and felinity.

★★★☆☆☆
IMDb it.

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