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Monday, March 04, 2024

Documentary ridicules lawn obsession, encourages environmentalism

For Eric Flagg and Isaac Brown, going green is a laughing matter.

"Gimme Green," a 27-minute documentary directed by Flagg and Brown, focuses on a topic rarely included in the dialogue on environmental dangers: the perfect lawn.

The documentary was shown Tuesday night at the Reitz Union.

The directors, who are both alumni of UF's Documentary Institute, discussed their film with more than 100 students.

"We wanted to make a film that people would watch," Brown said, "a film that wouldn't depress people."

Americans spend a total of about $40 billion on lawn maintenance annually, Brown said.

In the documentary, a man talks about a massive lawn mower as if it is a priceless sports car, a woman criticizes her neighbors' unkempt lawns, and an elderly man pets his grass.

"Laughter and humor really open up the way we learn," Flagg said.

Brown and Flagg wanted to make an environmental documentary that people could identify with. Almost all Americans can relate to lawns, the filmmakers said.

"Most people might not connect with a huge environmental problem like global warming," Brown said. "That's why we chose lawns."

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