Watch Rich Hill
- 1 hr 31 min
Rich Hill is a 2014 documentary that takes an intimate look at the lives of three teenage boys living in poverty in Rich Hill, Missouri, a small town with a population of 1,393. The film was directed by Tracy Droz Tragos and Andrew Droz Palermo, and won the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary at the Sundance Film Festival that year.
The film follows the lives of Andrew, Harley, and Appachey, three boys who come from different backgrounds, but who all live in difficult circumstances. Andrew, a 13-year-old who dreams of being a professional skateboarder, lives with his protective grandmother and his disabled father, who can't work due to a back injury. Harley, a 15-year-old whose father is in prison, lives with his mother and sister in a rundown trailer park. Appachey, also 15, struggles with anger management issues and ADHD, and lives with his mother, who suffers from a chronic illness, and his siblings.
Throughout the documentary, the boys open up about their struggles and aspirations, painting a vivid picture of life in a small town plagued by poverty and unemployment. We see Andrew skateboarding through the streets of Rich Hill, practicing his moves and dreaming of stardom, while his grandmother worries about his safety and his future. Harley talks about his love for hunting and fishing, and his desire to be a game warden, while his mother struggles to make ends meet and keep the family afloat. Appachey talks about his turbulent relationship with his mother, and his longing for a stable home life.
The film also shows the boys interacting with their families and their peers, revealing the complex social dynamics of a town where poverty is the norm. We see Andrew's father struggling with his addiction to prescription drugs, and his grandmother worrying about the fate of her grandson. We see Harley's mother struggling to provide for her family, and his sister dealing with her own struggles with mental health. And we see Appachey's mother trying to cope with her illness, while also trying to be a supportive parent to her son.
Rich Hill is not an easy film to watch. The stories of these three boys are often heartbreaking, and the film lays bare the harsh realities of poverty and neglect. But it is also a deeply human film, one that shows the resilience and spirit of these boys, and their families. By the end of the documentary, we feel like we know Andrew, Harley, and Appachey, and we feel invested in their futures.
Ultimately, Rich Hill is a powerful portrait of small-town America, one that challenges our preconceptions about poverty and human resilience. It's a film that reminds us of the importance of empathy and compassion, and of the power of documentary filmmaking to shed light on the lives of those who are often overlooked by society.
Rich Hill is a 2014 documentary with a runtime of 1 hour and 31 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2 and a MetaScore of 75.