Pella Chronicle

Z_CNHI News Service

December 10, 2013

Basketball team, small town struggle with defeat

If “Medora” were just another movie about a hard-luck high school basketball team, you might pan it and say, “So what? Who cares? Seen that.”

But it would be a mistake to dismisses this 82-minute documentary about a small town in southern Indiana and its 72-student high school that knows more despair than success.

"Medora" takes an intimate, raw look at people struggling now that the world has sped past them - much as it has thousands of other rural communities in America.

The film is showing at selected theaters or can be seen on-demand at www.medorafilm.com. It will be featured on the PBS program “Independent Lens” beginning March 31.

If the rollout is unconventional, so is the movie.

The film centers on a basketball team but is really about the survival of a way of life. One resident of Medora, whose population hovers around 700, observes: “Once we lose these small towns, we can’t get them back.”

What makes this story different is that it’s told by teenagers, some who have dreams and aspirations and others who struggle to make it to the next day.

Producers Davy Rothbart and Andrew Cohn set up this conflict early in the movie. Coach Justin Gilbert excoriates his team, which lost all 22 games the previous year, for failing to score a point in the fourth quarter of another humbling loss.

“Are you kidding me?” he says. “You had no points. Zero. Zero points in the fourth quarter. Zero. None. In eight minutes. Eight minutes. Eight minutes. Zero. Are you kidding me?”

The players slump, their heads bowed, on a locker room bench. Their expressions range between lost and humiliated.

If that was bad, an observation by one of the team’s better players is even more wrenching. Introspective Dylan McSoley ponders life without a father and whether he should try to contact him. “Hey, this is Dylan McSoley. You might not know me, but I’m your son,” he says, leaving a telephone message for a man he’s never seen except for once on a Facebook post.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
  • Screen shot 2014-04-18 at 4.44.15 PM.png Paint, doodle and sketch: 3 apps for art lovers

    In the absence of a palette of watercolors and a sketchpad, these three apps can fill in as your art supplies of choice.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Smartphone kill switches are coming

    Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!

    April 18, 2014

  • Why do wolves howl?

    Of all the myths that dog the wolf, none is more widely accepted than the idea that wolves howl at the moon. Images of wolves with their heads upturned, singing at the night sky, are as unquestioned as a goldfish's three-second memory or a dog's color-blindness (both also myths).

    April 18, 2014

  • Biggest student loan profits come from grad students

    This week, the Congressional Budget Office projected that the federal government would earn roughly $127 billion from student lending during the next 10 years.

    April 18, 2014

  • quake.jpg Pennsylvania won’t take action following Ohio ruling on quakes, fracking

    Pennsylvania officials plan no action despite new Ohio rules on drilling that affect a seismically active area near the state line.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Warren's populist pitch on student loans is off key

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren's populist rhetoric pumps up students about their loan burdens, but she conveniently neglects to mention the real problem - the exorbitant cost of college - much less how she's benefitted from those high prices.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • VIDEO: Boston bomb scare defendant appears in court

    The man accused of carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker near the Boston Marathon finish line on the anniversary of the bombings was arraigned Wednesday. He's being held on $100,000 bail.

    April 17, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 17, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Golf turns into snooze-fest without celebrities like Tiger and Phil

    The Masters lumbered on last week without two of pro golf's biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and fans changed the channel. The PGA needs someone with star power if it's going to lure people back to the game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 17, 2014

Features
Facebook
AP Video
Raw: More Than 100,000 Gather for Easter Sunday Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Obituaries