With Special Thanks

1986, 5:29 min, color, sound

"In July I hid several credit cards in a planter on the roof of the building where I live. I vowed to abstain. But in ten days I was desperate." So writes Barr in With Special Thanks, his wry commentary on American consumer culture. In this comic homage to consumerism, the camera pans over a seemingly endless display of charge cards. Using a written text that scrolls across the screen, he sketches a humorous tale of frustrated plans and wasted dollars. In quest of the perfect vacation, Barr travels to South America, Mexico, and Long Island, using twenty-one different credit cards, purchasing a 3/4-inch video deck and camera at the journey's end. He writes, "The tape is a financial statement that spans a year, highlighting the living and buying habits of a chronic consumer."