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Fast, Cheap & Out of Control (1997)

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An exploration of the careers of four unrelated professionals: a lion tamer, a robotics expert, a topiary gardener, and a naked mole rat specialist.

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11 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Himself (Wild Animal Trainer)
... Himself (Topiary Gardener)
Raymond A. Mendez ... Himself (Mole-Rat Specialist) (as Ray Mendez)
... Himself - Robot Scientist
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Storyline

What do an elderly topiary gardener, a retired lion tamer, a man fascinated by mole rats, and a cutting-edge robotics designer have in common? Both nothing and everything in this unconventional documentary directed by Erroll Morris. Fast, Cheap & Out of Control (Referring to the robot specialist's strange philosophy of robot design structure, not Erroll Morris's documentary techniques!) interplays, overlaps, and interrelates these four separate and highly specialized documentary subjects in order to in truth study all of humanity, raising questions about the future of mankind. Written by Matthew F. Griffin

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Genres:

Documentary

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild thematic elements | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Sony Classics

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 October 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ektos elenhou  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$23,665, 5 October 1997, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$832,785, 11 January 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Quotes

Rodney Brooks: If you analyze it too much, life becomes almost meaningless.
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Connections

Features Darkest Africa (1936) See more »

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User Reviews

Fascinating Representation of Contrasting Subjects
2 March 2000 | by See all my reviews

I was amazed at how Errol Morris abstractly tied together four people with such contrasting occupations. I was skeptical before seeing the film--after all, how on earth would anyone relate a lion tamer, topiary gardener, mole rat specialist and robot expert--but Morris pulls it off excellently. The ties between certain details of each interview either tie visually or conceptually with one of the other interviewees, and the beauty is in the way the ideas are strung together. The quirky soundtrack is fantastic, giving a twist to circus music that carries the mood of the film, as well as help Morris to make serious comments about life. At any rate, this is a very enjoyable documentary, even to those who strongly dislike documentaries.


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