A documentary on Peter Dunning, the proprietor of Mile Hill Farm in Vermont who has isolated himself away from his family and often suggests to the filmmakers to make his own suicide a narrative device.
Peter Dunning is the proud proprietor of Mile Hill Farm, which sits on 187 acres in Vermont. The land's 38 harvests have seen the arrivals and departures of three wives and four children, leaving Peter with only animals and memories. The arrival of a film crew causes him to confront his history and his legacy, passing along hard-won agricultural wisdom even as he doubts the meaning of the work he is fated to perform until death. Haunted by alcoholism and regret, Peter veers between elation and despair, often suggesting to the filmmakers his own suicide as a narrative device. He is a tragedian on a stage it has taken him most of his life to build, and which now threatens to collapse from under him. At once a postcard from paradise and a cautionary tale for our times, Peter and The Farm sifts through the potential energy of a human life, that which is used and that which is squandered.Written by
A troubled alcoholic farmer lets his mind wander to an onlooking documentary team who film him in situ at his bucolic Vermont farm. Peter Dunning's ruminations range from the bitter to the bittersweet to the absurd. What's remarkable is how Tony Stone conveys the link between Dunning's worldview, which can oscillate from contentment to threats of suicide, as being inextricably linked to the physical and mental toils of the farm, and the weather which ranges from tundra to balmy sunshine. What lingers is Dunning's assertion that he is now fully bodily and spiritually connected to the farm, so much so that he has become the farm.
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