The Burning Barrel

Consumerism has a personal cost in the rise and fall of a small rural community.

Premiere Date
February 1, 1997
30 minutes
Funding Initiative
Open Call
  • Award laurels-r Created with Sketch.
    1997 International Documentary Association (IDA)-Best Short
  • Producer

    Christina Craton


    Timothy Schwab

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    The Film

    On the farm, no sanitation worker wearing gloves comes to make garbage disappear. Bottles and cans are collected for regular trips to the county landfill, food scraps go to the compost heap, and piles upon piles of paper are fed weekly into the burning barrel. Using home movies, family snapshots, the prairie landscape, and advertising images drawn from the last 35 years, The Burning Barrel documents the rise and fall of a small rural community and, in the process, explores the personal and social costs of consumerism.