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Vernon, Florida (1981)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 8 October 1981 (USA)
4:33 | Clip
A documentary on the eccentric residents of Vernon, Florida.


Errol Morris





Credited cast:
Albert Bitterling Albert Bitterling ... Self
Roscoe Collins Roscoe Collins ... Self
George Harris ... Self
Joe Payne Joe Payne ... Self
Howard Pettis Howard Pettis ... Self
Claude Register Claude Register ... Self
Snake Reynolds Snake Reynolds ... Self
Henry Shipes Henry Shipes ... Self


Early Errol Morris documentary intersplices random chatter he captured on film of the genuinely eccentric residents of Vernon, Florida. A few examples? The preacher giving a sermon on the definition of the word "Therefore," and the obsessive turkey hunter who speaks reverentially of the "gobblers" he likes to track down and kill. Written by Mark Toscano <fiddybop@uclink4.berkeley.edu>

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Did You Know?


Originally titled Nub City, this follow-up to Gates of Heaven was initially focused on residents of the Southern town who cut off their own limbs as a way to collect insurance money. After Morris's life was threatened by the subjects of the film, he re-worked Nub City into Vernon, Florida. See more »


Claude Register: You ever seen a man's brains? I've seen them. I've picked them up, scooped them up. Put them in, do them up like brains. You buying brains?
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User Reviews

Complex & Wonderful Documentary From Errol Morris
15 September 2003 | by davidalsSee all my reviews

I first saw VERNON Florida about 10 years ago, while living in a small town in the mountains of Western North Carolina, and it hit really close to home. The film at first almost seems condescending - quirky small-town Southerners are an unfortunately easy target for artistes, and stereotypes are so, so tiresome. But Morris has real affection for his subjects - they never seem undignified, and basic human emotions (like the turkey hunter's rampaging enthusiasm, and his eloquent descriptions of his emotional reaction while on a hunt) do really shine through here. And in small towns, a certain home-grown individuality CAN fluorish, and this film underscores that in great fashion, and for all of the quirk seen here, Morris (or his subjects) really also get close to some sort of swamp-bred Zen, graceful and succinct. Morris' style and pacing reminds me a little of Herzog, or maybe Ozu, where a still and unmoving camera perfectly captures the dignity and charm of his subjects, while preserving all of their quirks. Overall, this very accomplished documentary is surprising and well worth a look.

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Release Date:

8 October 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vernon, Florida See more »

Filming Locations:

Vernon, Florida, USA

Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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