Wild Wild Country: A Netflix documentary about the free love cult that took over an Oregon town in the 80s
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- Wild Wild Country | Netflix Official Site
In 1981 Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and his secretary Ma Anand Sheela bought a 64 thousand acre ranch in rural Oregon and relocated there with their followers. The Rajneeshee community they established clashed with the locals. The battle that ensued involved everything from busing in homeless people to swing the vote to an attempted assassination of a federal prosecutor.
Damn, if only I wasn't on vacation I would definitely watch this. Thanks for the suggestion OP, great find.
It's not just the subject matter that made this so good. The production was incredible. They put in the effort to dig up actual footage from local news stations and tracked down people on all sides. What I found to be most compelling was how I switched sides so many times throughout this show. It plays down the middle so well that at times I come to understand the same people I hated minutes before, only to flip back when new details are revealed.
As far as I understand the huge amount of tapes they found is the reason why they did the doc in the first place. Back in those days, the TV stations would tape over the ... tapes once the content on it was reported. But they didn't do it with the tapes about the cult. Also the cult had a media department and was doing promotional videos all the time, so they had a bunch of tapes as well. I hope I'm not making anything up, here's an interview with the directors where they talk about it.
Saw this a while back. It's extremely engrossing, even if the topic isn't your thing.
The cult members that the documentarians interview are transfixing.
The amount of charisma the cult leader's secretary had was almost scary. Whenever they talked about the next crazy thing she came up with, I could totally see how people would just go along with her.