Troublesome Creek: A Midwestern

"Good"

Troublesome Creek: A Midwestern Review


Farming is a tough life. Hell, that's why they have Farm Aid, right?

Well, Steven Ascher and Jeanne Jordan set out to prove what a tough row to hoe (sorry) the farm life is though their dutiful documenting of Jordan's parents in their waning days on the family farm. Jordan relates with midwestern efficiency a story about how her folks worked the land for decades, only to have the bank come knocking for its $220,000 debt when -- depending on how much of Jordan's conspiracy you buy -- her parents turn 70, her dad gets Parkinson's, their old pal the bank president retires, or business just turns sour.

After a good amount of rambling -- wherein we dutifully visit with the enormous Jordan clan and hear from the Evil Banker about credit risk -- we finally get to the heart of what Troublesome Creek (named after the stream that runs behind the farm) is about: The elder Jordans hatch a plan to a) sell everything they own, b) retire to "town," c) save the land and the farmhouse they have, and d) let their son John work on their land with the equipment he's been buying to work his own rented farm.

The obviousness of this plan makes you wonder why the Jordans didn't simply do it years earlier, rather than working into their 70s, and if they couldn't come up with this idea earlier, how savvy as businesspeople could they possibly be? And seriously: If this is as bad as it gets -- you have to sell some cows and crappy furniture so you can pay off your debt and give a big plot of land to your kids -- just what has all that Farm Aid money been about? If you listen to Willie Nelson, you'd think there were bums sleeping in the rows of corn throughout Iowa.

Despite her plaintive voice, Jordan at least doesn't beg for pity for her family, but there is a good amount whining throughout, about how evil big banks are, about how there's nothing to do on a farm when you're growing up, how despite the fact that she didn't really care for farm life, she really does love the place. And on and on it goes until we're just about ready to give up corn if only so they don't make any more movies like this.

Still, Troublesome Creek works fairly well as an educational film. If nothing else, it teaches you the mechanics of the farm business, and more importantly the mechanics of rural lending. Whether you feel bad for the Jordans or not probably depends on how much sympathy you have for people who don't quite get the concept of capitalism - sympathy which I famously have none of -- but from where I'm sitting it looks like the Jordans didn't do too bad for themselves in the end.



Troublesome Creek: A Midwestern

Facts and Figures

Run time: 88 mins

In Theaters: Monday 16th January 1995

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 82%
Fresh: 9 Rotten: 2

IMDB: 7.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Steven Ascher, Jeanne Jordan

Producer: Steven Ascher, Jeanne Jordan

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Wind River Movie Review

Wind River Movie Review

After writing the superb Sicario and Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan moves back into...

The Vault Movie Review

The Vault Movie Review

Filmmakers Dan Bush and Conal Byrne attempt a mash-up of a frantic heist movie with...

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

Goon: Last of the Enforcers Movie Review

The 2012 Canadian comedy Goon was one of those surprising little films that snuck up...

Detroit Movie Review

Detroit Movie Review

After The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal reteam to...

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Logan Lucky Movie Review

Good news: Steven Soderbergh's well-publicised retirement from directing only lasted about four years. He's back...

American Made Movie Review

American Made Movie Review

An enjoyably freewheeling tone and Tom Cruise's star wattage combine to make this an entertaining...

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power Movie Review

It's been a decade since Al Gore's wake-up-call documentary won the Oscar. And here he...

Advertisement
The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

The Hitman's Bodyguard Movie Review

It really doesn't matter that this movie is utterly ridiculous, because the central pairing of...

Final Portrait Movie Review

Final Portrait Movie Review

A relaxed, amusing true story about noted Swiss painter and sculptor Alberto Giacometti, this sharply...

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Tom of Finland Movie Review

Finnish artist Tuoko Laaksonen used the name "Tom of Finland" as he drew explicit illustrations...

A Ghost Story Movie Review

A Ghost Story Movie Review

Filmmaker David Lowery reunites the stars from his offbeat Western Ain't Them Bodies Saints for...

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

Atomic Blonde Movie Review

From the co-director of John Wick, this similarly styled action romp puts Charlize Theron front...

Girls Trip Movie Review

Girls Trip Movie Review

This movie's premise basically sounds like The Hangover with added black girl power. But it's...

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie Movie Review

There's so much manic energy in this animated action comedy that it can't help but...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.