Hilltop Happenings

Trophy Homes on Martha's Vineyard Catalyst for 'One Big Home'; Documentary Gets Summit, Area Premiere Apr. 28

Credits: facebook.com/OneBigHome/photos
Credits: facebook.com/OneBigHome/photos

SUMMIT, NJ - The construction of 'Trophy homes' -- some a as large as 20,000 square feet --  are threatening the unique character of Martha’s Vineyard. These structures stand in stark contrast to the Vineyard's traditional cottages and many sit vacant for up to ten months annually yet are heated year-round.

Feeling complicit in wrecking the place he calls home, carpenter -- and Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival Founder -- Thomas Bena takes off his tool belt and picks up a camera. "One Big Home," his first feature-length documentary and which took him twelve years to make, is the story of this larger-than-life phenomenon.

"One Big Home" will screen at MONDO April 28 at 8 p.m.

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Bumping up against tired clichés, angry homeowners, and builders who would rather look the other way, Bena works with his community and attempts to create a new bylaw that would limit house size.

How much room does one family need? That might depend on how they relate to the world. Bena takes in the massive complexes with swimming pools right beside the ocean, with cinemas and bowling alleys in the basement.

He also talks about community, leaving the viewer to consider whether these things are unacceptably extravagant or whether the real problem is that it would make much more sense to share them. Ultimately, Bena works with his community and attempts to pass a new bylaw that limits house size.

Admission is $12 in advance, $14 at the door. Advance tickets can be reserved by contacting summitfilm@gmail.com or purchasing at MONDO. Seating is limited.

For further information, visit summitfilmsociety.com. MONDO is located at 426 Springfield Avenue.


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