Cinema Review: Finders Keepers | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, June 1st, 2023  

Finders Keepers

Studio: The Orchard
Directed by Bryan Carberry and Clay Tweel

Sep 22, 2015 Web Exclusive
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In September of 2007, North Carolina entrepreneur Shannon Whisnant bought a used smoker grill at an auction; inside he found a partially-mummified human leg. Rather than toss it in a dumpster as he was advised, Whisnant saw the dismembered limb as a sign of good fortune. His discovery turned him into a local celebrity; Whisnant had t-shirts printed to celebrate the foot and charged visitors an admission fee for a glimpse at the famous grill. The story took on an even stranger twist, however, when the foot’s original owner—John Woods, a struggling addict who lost the limb in a plane crash three years earlier—wanted it back. Their bizarre battle over custody of the decaying foot made international headlines, and had repercussions on each man’s life that are still felt today, nearly a whole decade later.

Bryan Carberry and Clay Tweel’s entertaining documentary looks at the media circus which surrounded their sideshow battle, but also paints fascinating portraits of these two highly unusual individuals. Some of its most compelling bits, however, are when it focuses on each man’s families, and the ripple effects that their obsessions and addictions had on the people who loved them. This makes what could have been a real freakshow documentary oddly and unexpectedly moving. Finders Keepers is one of the strangest but most effective character studies we’ve seen in years.

Author rating: 7/10

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