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Meet ‘Super Mario’, the man who’s lived on cruise ships for two decades

Mario Salcedo may just be the world’s only full-time cruiser. It’s a lifestyle he took up some 23 years ago after leaving a lucrative career in finance, and, with the exception a 15-month COVID-19 interruption, hasn’t left since. Eliminating all ‘non-value-added activities’ from his life, such as taking out the garbage or doing laundry, Salcedo enjoys cruising on his own terms, rarely disembarking on stops and eschewing other large-group actives that most of his vacationing shipmates enjoy. The peculiar reality he’s built for himself, untethered from worldly problems or relationship obligations, has made him ‘the happiest guy in the world’ – as he keeps telling those he encounters in this short documentary. Woven together with clever cinematography and editing, the US director Lance Oppenheim’s film captures Salcedo pre-pandemic, and in his natural habitat. In doing so, The Happiest Guy in the World subtly probes deeper questions of freedom, capitalism and meaning-making.

Director: Lance Oppenheim

Producers: Melissa Oppenheim, Erich Joiner

24 February 2022

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