Film-maker Martin Hampton has created a revealing documentary on four people with different degrees of compulsive hoarding, where individuals incessantly collect household objects, even to the point of not being able to throw out rubbish.
Compulsive hoarding is often linked to obsessive-compulsive disorder, where affected people experience intrusive thoughts or urges to complete certain actions (most commonly ‘washing’ or ‘checking’) even though they know how seriously these intrusions are affecting their lives.
Hampton’s documentary is a remarkably well made account of people with similar urges, in this case to collect and retain, and just lets the individuals and the images speak for themselves (it is also freely available online as wide screen HD, so looks wonderful).
Apparently the documentary was created as part of a Master’s course in visual anthropology, a field I’d not come across before, but which seems to be concerned with documenting the diversity of human experience through film.
Possessed does this admirably and seems to have garnered numerous awards since it’s release.
UPDATE: Grabbed from the comments. An update and a request from the director!
I am the director of this film and am now researching the next stage of the project. I am trying to compile a collection of peoples experiences of OCD and other anxiety based disorders. I have found from experience that although symptoms might be similar, the actual particularities of the obsessions and compulsions are often very varied. For example, one might wash ones hands 30 times a day, but have a very unique self discovered reason for doing so. I would be very grateful to hear of your or any friend / acquaintances experiences / difficulties. Many thanks and I hope you find the film interesting. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org