OCEANA, W.Va. — A resident of Oceana says the new film “Oxyana” does not accurately portray his Wyoming County town.
“Our community is filled with people who work hard, who are educated, who play in that town, work in that town and do what they can do to make it a better town,” Dennie Morgan said on Tuesday’s MetroNews Talkline.
“Oxyana,” a documentary from director Sean Dunne, recently premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City. It has not yet been widely released.
Morgan has not seen it, but he already has opinions. “We’re very unhappy with the way Mr. Dunne has portrayed our town in the press,” Morgan said.
Film reviews say “Oxyana” focuses on the OxyContin epidemic in Oceana to illustrate the spread of drug dependency in the U.S. today.
But Morgan said he thinks Dunne came into Oceana with the story he wanted to tell already formed in his mind.
“Mr. Dunne selected his subjects for the film very carefully, and his agenda has been to portray Oceana in the worst possible light,” he said.
“We’re not going to be naive and say there’s not a drug problem in this area. There is a drug problem in Central Appalachia with prescription drugs, but he’s thrown the baby out with the bathwater. You don’t have to throw an entire town on the bus in order to further an agenda.”
Morgan is helping organize a townhall meeting to bring together residents to talk about the issue at 6 p.m. on May 31 at Oceana Middle School.