NEVER ENOUGH is a meditation on materialism, consumerism, mental illness and the social fabric of our lives.
Anderson has chosen wonderful subjects to tell their story, people whose self-understanding runs as deep as their addiction to collecting. She takes clutter out of the aesthetic and moral, where it usually resides, and into the philosophical. Students across the gamut, from psychology to literature, will find provocative ideas here.
Michele Gitlin has 700 sweaters. In touch with the pain as well as the pleasure of over-collecting, she calls Ron “Disaster Master” Alford for help. Ron, a de-cluttering expert who believes that “clutter begins in the head, and ends up on the floor,” determines that Michele is a hoarder with a rating of 8 (out of ten) on his “clutter index.” Ron also visits a retired Marine with 7,800 Beanie Babies and a home shopping addict whose purchases are literally burying him.
A fascinating examination of the thin line separating the collector from the hoarder. NEVER ENOUGH will stimulate discussion in a variety of disciplines, including sociology, anthropology, psychology, and cultural studies. Highly recommended for use in both graduate and undergraduate classrooms.
Terrific ... Shows with great empathy how the ubiquitous desire to collect and hold on to things can go awry. By letting the subjects speak for themselves and by providing vivid images of their piles and collections the film portrays in a uniquely compelling manner the agony that these people experience and the tenacity of their compulsion.
A sensitive and nuanced portrait of characters who might, in a lesser film, manifest as caricatures.
The people and their obsessions are tenderly presented, and the links between these folks and the ethos of the broader consumer culture are astounding. In the classroom I have no doubt that this film will lead to energetic discussions about compulsive hoarders and the inner life of American consumer society in general. A gem.