The character Tyler Durden in Chuck Palahniuk’s Fight Club notes that “we buy things we don’t need, with money we don’t have, to impress people we don’t like”, concluding that “the things you own end up owning you.” There seems to be a growing number of people interested in changing their lifestyles by owning and consuming less. “Minimalism” has become one of those lifestyle options and in the documentary film Minimalism, director Matt D’Avella profiles several minimalists, including Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, authors and founders of The Minimalists web site. A simple lifestyle is not simply for single guys, as Leo Babauta and Joshua Becker attest, but more attention to just how the diverse needs and interests in a family are respected in a minimalist household would have enhanced the film.
Commercials and advertising are ubiquitous and we are constantly bombarded with offers to buy the latest and best, from cars to clothes, and smart phones to tablets. We’re made to believe we need to purchase the newest iteration. It can be difficult to resist the temptation to keep up, especially when we’re missing out on the “things” that might make us “cool.”
For men interested in thinking more seriously about their habits of consumption this film provides a unique perspective and offers a new way forward for those inclined to make changes to their buying habits, focusing more on living and experiencing than on buying, purchasing, and owning. Living with less to make room for more of what really matters in life.
Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things
Directed by Matt D’Avella
Previously published on STAND Magazine