Plagues & Pleasures of the Salton Sea


Deep in the southern California desert, 50 miles south of Palm Springs, lies the Salton Sea. Once a resort for the wealthy, now a decaying haven for eccentrics and retirees, the Sea may soon prove an environmental disaster for California. But that's only part of the point of this delightful documentary by directors Chris Metzler and Jeff Springer. Rather than wallow in the depressing outlook or regale us with pleas for activism, Plagues & Pleasures first paints a lively portrait of the people and the place. Then, by the time we learn what fate may lie ahead, we care enough to want to help. Meet Hunky Daddy, a former Hungarian revolutionary who drinks away his days in praise of America. Naked Don is a nudist who stands beside the highway, spreading a message of love and peace. Leonard Knight is an artist building a plaster mountain in praise of God. These and other amiable spirits will keep you company as you learn about the plight of the sea.