New York Times that details the attempts of the southern Indiana town of Medora to keep hope alive in spite of their team's previous 0-22 season. Directors Andrew Cohn and Davy Rothbart embedded themselves in the town for several months and acquired hundreds of hours of footage that they edited down to 82 minutes of sheer drama that plays like a narrative feature. At one point, after a player gets kicked off the team, one of the filmmakers follows him as he lingers about town and eventually comes to rest on a playground swing and muses: "Getting on the ba..."/>
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The New Hoosiers

 

continued

At another point, a player leads one of the filmmakers along a dusty road toward a trailer park and says: "This is the first house I really remember livin' in. This don't even look like it should be back here, it just looks like it was a corn field and then people decided to put trailers back here. My mom and dad used to be together when they lived here and they fought a lot here."

Broken homes, substance abuse and poverty haunt the community of Medora, and for the players who come into focus in this film, such realities serve as ever-present reminders of the fate of those who give in to failure. However, the deck is stacked against this town and it has been for some time. The factories that used to provide jobs to sustain the life of the community have closed, the population has dwindled, and their school is constantly under threat of consolidation, a process that neighboring schools have already undergone to create the lopsided odds the Medora Hornets face every time they take the court.

A graphic in the film demonstrates the problem. Several area schools are shown consolidating into one, growing their population to 738 students and 362 boys, but Medora remains with only 72 students and 33 boys. Medora has to reach down into the ranks of their younger students, who would ordinarily be playing junior varsity, to help field their varsity team, while the consolidated schools select from the very best of their upperclassmen.

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