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Nimrod Nation, Season 1TV-PG

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This eight-part original documentary series from filmmaker Brett Morgen (The Kid Stays in the Picture) profiles rural Watersmeet, Michigan, where everyone follows the progress of the local high-school basketball team — the Nimrods. More a portrait of a small American town than a conventional sports documentary, Nimrod Nation sympathetically observes life and conversation in the local coffee shops, hunting lodges, and locker rooms as the long, cold basketball season unfolds.

Customer Reviews

Staged and Edited, Not What Watersmeet Really Is

What you see in this series is staged. Film crews suggested activities that they felt would best portray the image they had in mind for Watersmeet. How do I know? Because I was asked to participate in some of them. Several of the ball players were asked to do things that they really never do, such as go ice fishing or visit the home of a mentor. How do I know? They talked openly about it before going out to put on a show for the film crews. I witnessed much of the filming that was actually done. Very little of it made the final edit. What was intentionally left out? Anything that negatively portrayed certain key characters, such as the reels of footage that captured them drinking heavily in the bars each evening or any references to a key character's arrest for Driving While Intoxicated. How did this happen? He threatened to pull the plug on the entire series if anything negative was portrayed about him. How do I know? He told me this. He actually told many people this. I live in Watersmeet. If the series looks like a throwback to the mindsets of long ago, it certainly does bear some of those troubling legacies. It is a community where many of the people are still deeply divided by racism. Much of this came up during the filming. But under threat of having the plug pulled, the reels of alcoholism and racism found their way to the cutting room's floor. The innocent image portrayed by this series does great harm to those of us who live here and have been trying to make a difference in the lives of our youth. Unfortunately, the people most responsible for these problems are some of the main adult characters in this series. It does not help to present them as pillars of the community when they are anything but. Several members of the Lac Vieux Desert community are so offended that they have written a letter denouncing this series as yet another example of the reductive history of the area. Many, many tribal officials were filmed, yet as was noticed in the special premiere viewing of the entire series, their valid complaints about the community's enduring racism were nowhere to be found.

...Home of the Brave

This film is clearly not just about basketball; it's about a culture. "Nimrod Nation" is an accurate portrayal of rural life in Northern Michigan. Through candid, unscripted narration, the viewer witnesses small town gossip, largely focused on the high school basketball team, which is the centerpiece of the community and this film. One will notice a strong regional dialect, as well as how the Nimrods adapt to the extreme weather conditions only common to certain parts of the northern country. The viewer learns what it is like to grow up as a "Yooper" through vivid snapshots of daily activities and pastimes. As the film progresses toward an emotional ending, don't forget that although life in rural Michigan is warm and welcoming, it can sometimes be rather chilly and brutal.

Not a yooper but...

I'm not a Yooper but I am a Michigan native and I think this is a great series. When you come from a small town like Watersweet, it is very easy for the whole town to get behind one team. This show is spectacular in truthfully portraying the pressures experienced by this group of kids and the emotions that go along with those pressures.

Nimrod Nation, Season 1
View In iTunes $13.99
  • SD Version
  • Genre: Nonfiction
  • Released: Nov 19, 2007

Customer Ratings