Jasper Mall (2020)
The 2020 documentary Jasper Mall spends the better part of a year following the dying Alabama mall and the local residents who work, shop, and congregate within its diminishing structure, showing just how small town America has begun to wash away in the years following the 2008 financial crisis. There’s no narration or build up to a grand finale, instead directors Bradford Thomason and Brett Whitcomb let the mall’s inhabitants do the heavy lifting and serve as nothing more than flies on the wall.
Much like in Nomadland, the subjects of Jasper Mall are fully aware of their situation and how it may be viewed, but in the simplicity of their lives they find freedom and happiness. Another comparison can be drawn from the way both films show how much can change over the course of a year, whether it be stores closing, people dying, or new, fresher beginnings.
Stream it on Amazon here.