Video on Demand — November 2011
Bombay Beach, winner of the World Documentary Competition at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, parallels the lives of three eccentrics — a bipolar child, an aspiring football player and an 80-year-old poet/prophet — living around the Salton Sea in southern California. Director Alma Har’el, who previously worked in music videos, applies her sensibilities to a music-driven tone poem with elements of non-fiction and performance. Using songs from Bob Dylan and Beirut, she accentuates the anachronistic quality of the forgotten community. Once a breeding ground for tourists, the Salton Sea is now a toxic lake replete with relics of another time. Under Harel’s unique directorial vision, Bombay Beach becomes a space for imagination, a place where people’s dreams either stagnate or take flight.