Forty-six million Americans live in rural, small-town America. These towns were once the backbone of American life. While their number and populations have shrunk, the importance of rural America as a formative center of American politics and values was demonstrated in the 2016 presidential election. To understand more about American life, it is important to acknowledge the unique and important contributions small towns make to American character and culture, in addition to providing most of our food, raw materials and drinking water. The film explores the conflicting stereotypes and illustrates how values like community service, duty, spiritual life, generosity and authenticity are formed, experienced and lived. The film gives a complex and nuanced view of daily life in Monrovia, Indiana (2017 population: 1,443) and provides some understanding of a rural, mid-American way of life that has always been important in America but whose influence and force have not always been recognized or understood in the big cities on the east and west coasts of America and in other countries.
DIR/SCR/PROD Frederick Wiseman. U.S., 2018, color, 143 min. NOT RATED
No AFI Member passes accepted.