Troublesome Creek: A Midwestern

USA | 1996 | 87 min

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Critically acclaimed, Troublesome Creek was nominated for an Academy Award and was awarded both the Grand Jury Award and the Audience Award for best documentary at the Sundance Film Festival, among many other awards.

Russel Jordan’s Iowa farm had been in the family for 125 years. It had survived the dust bowl, the Depression, two world wars and the turbulent 1980’s. But in 1990, after a disastrous meeting with the bank, Russ saw their luck running out: the Jordans owed the bank $220,000 -- money they didn’t have. He called his daughter Jeanne in Boston to tell her the news, and to talk about his long-shot plan to try to save the land. Jeanne and her husband Steven Ascher are an award-winning filmmaking team. In the hours and days after Russ's call, Ascher and Jordan decided that this story – which seemed straight out of one Russ’s beloved Westerns – had to be captured on film.

Troublesome Creek: A Midwestern is partly about the dramatic events of that precarious year on the farm. But in that story, universal themes emerge of family, marriage, legacy and survival. Troublesome Creek brings to light the fragile nature of small business and the tensile strength of a family's humor and love. Audiences around the world, both urban and rural, have found something of themselves in the Jordan’s story. Troublesome Creek is funny, wry and emotional without being sentimental. It's a cliffhanger about history and the deep character that settled America, and now presides at its unsettling.


  • DIR Steven Ascher & Jeanne Jordan
    SCR Steven Ascher & Jeanne Jordan
    CAST Russel Jordan, Mary Jane Jordan, Jon Jordan, Jim Jordan, Jeanne Jordan, Jordan Sisters

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