The Spork Guy’s review published on Letterboxd:
The aftermath of a major disaster has the ability to bring out the worst in people. In the narrative-absent world of Harmony Korine, said disaster is never needed to do this. This blatantly raw, avant garde gem is the prime showcase for a world where the most vile or taboo action is art in the eyes of all who behold it. Death and pain are just verbs and nouns here, not reason for sorrow and panic. Although life is anything but enjoyable here, it is such a normal outlook that no one has any real complaints about existing. With an over the top soundtrack that fuels its plot perfectly and visuals that border on the aspects of sickening and beautiful, the film is fearless on its mission to show us what real humanity is. The kind of humanity we get when we subtract the sophisticated mores, pleasing expectations others hold us to and the many false traditions we've willingly surrounded ourselves with.
Gummo teeders on the border of non-fiction and narrative, being filmed in such an artistic, surreal fashion, acknowledging the camera is a passive artistic choice, not a sign that they editor used the wrong take for the final cut. The execution of the subjects on screen is so interpersonal that the performances they give exceed that of acting. The movie itself is pure poetry. The most beautiful kind of poetry. The kind no one puts judgment on for it's eccentricity, but instead embraces it, watching other imperfect people live out their day, making them feel as if they finally have a counterpoint to rest their insecurities on.
The town of Xenia, Ohio is a dimension in which humanity acts solely on their feral instincts, while barely holding on to the idea of a society. With this small and troubled civilization still recovering from recent pandemonium, we center our view on these few select individuals who have only a few things left to their name - their personalities, their temptations, and their fearlessness to act upon them. As our main characters poetically narrate the experimental structure of events, Harmony is our ringleader, guiding us through a tour of our species acting upon the most basic of animosities. We are not a special organism, we are just an organism in general.
- The Spork Guy