Blu-ray, DVD Release: Gates of Heaven / Vernon, Florida

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: March 24, 2015
Price: DVD $29.95, Blu-ray $39.95
Studio: Criterion

With his trademark mixture of empathy and scrutiny, Errol Morris (A Brief History of Time) has changed the face of documentary filmmaking in the United States, and his career began with two remarkable tales of American eccentricity: 1978’s Gates of Heaven and 1981’s Vernon, Florida

One of the hairier citizens of Vernon, Florida

One of the hairier citizens of Vernon, Florida

The first uses two Southern California pet cemeteries as the bases for a profound and funny rumination on love, loss, and industry; the second travels to a languorous southern backwater and meets a handful of fascinating folks—a determined turkey hunter, a curious minister, a laconic policeman—engaged in individualistic, sometimes absurd pursuits.

Morris consistently creates humane portraits of true candor, and these early works remain two of his greatest and most provocative films.

Criterion’s Blu-ray and DVD editions of these docus contain the following:

  • New 2K digital restorations of both films, supervised by director Errol Morris, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-rays
    • New interviews with Morris
    • Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe(1980), a twenty-minute film by Les Blank featuring Herzog fulfilling a bet intended to inspire Morris to complete his first feature
    • Footage of Herzog professing his admiration for Gates of Heaven at the 1980 Telluride Film Festival
    • An essay by critic Eric Hynes
Buy or Rent Gates of Heaven / Vernon, Florida
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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.