Tiny Explores One Man's Quest to Live In a Shoebox

Most of us are forced to live small: In small apartments in small buildings with small windows and small closets and cat piss-scented roommates on meth. Others willingly choose to live out their days in homes no larger than a parking space, and now you can watch a movie about their electively cramped style.


The documentary Tiny surveys the anal-retentively organized lives of "tiny house" practitioners, people who design and reside in microscopic dwellings, some under 100 square feet. Those dimensions are actually so small they're illegal in the U.S.—many cities require a free-standing residence to be at least 500 square feet in size—so most of these tiny houses are actually trailers. But the movie isn't about people who live in trailers because they can't afford a house, it's about people who can afford to live in houses but would rather live in trailers.

While I was excited about the premise of learning about postage stamp-living, I admit I was a bit turned off by the narrative. The film purportedly follows one man's oft-misguided quest to build his own house-on-wheels, and I found myself getting annoyed with his inability to just get it done already. It was far more fascinating to peek inside the lifestyles of the wide variety of homeowners already living in extremely close quarters with their loved ones. The most important question—where and how do they poop?—is not answered until the end, so at the very least you will want to watch it all the way through for that. [Vimeo on Demand]



You addressed the problems that I had with it. I'm less interested in the story about the man trying to build his tiny home, and more interested in how they live life in them. Also, the trailer kinda sucked. Needed better music and audio wasn't equalized very well. The concept of living in a small home is interesting though. I live in a studio apartment right now that's 600 square feet and it feels large enough for me and my dog.