Four young friends set out to live on just $1 a day for two months in rural Guatemala. Armed with only a video camera, they battle hunger, parasites, and extreme financial stress as they attempt to survive life on the edge.
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Reviewed in the United States on December 24, 2017
While watching this film brought so many different emotions, I am very thankful for Chris and Zach, and all their crew for bringing this way of life to screen. I'm sitting here in my living room pondering my next move to a state far away, because that's where I will have my next job opportunity. The online research of this new place to live shows a very high cost of living for basics such as food, shelter, etc. - I am scared. Scared that I may not make it; no savings or a current job poses a detrimental start for me in this new place. Yet, as I watch this film, I have renewed hope! I told myself, " I will make it, I will be okay!!" If these families can fight to survive on the mere minimum or less and still have smiles on their faces and show such kindness and love, then I have nothing to fear. I have promised myself to do a better job at helping others; definitely the people of Pena Blanca, as well as others who are even closer to home. I think it was Chris that said something (at the ending of the film) like, "there are more people not living in poverty than there are living in poverty, like each individual can help and affect a single other individual, we can change the world" - and as the saying goes, it takes one individual and one act of kindness to make a change. Just imagine if each of us do one act to help....ROSA, THANK YOU FOR INSPIRING ME!
I was looking for a documentary to show my kids how good we have it financially in the U.S., and how they shouldn’t take for granted the many benefits of being in middle class USA. Little did I know I would be so personally impacted by this film! First of all, the production quality is excellent. The team did a wonderful job telling the story with music, graphics, and powerful storytelling. The film kept the attention of all 3 of our kids (10 and under). The premise is powerful, and well executed by the 4 guys in the film. What would it be like to experience living on 1 dollar a day for 8 weeks? It really does capture the realities and challenges of living in poverty. I love the wrestling with how to take care of basic needs (food, water, shelter). But later, the guys wrestle with how to lift people out of poverty (micro loans being a key solution). They really do give an honest and nuanced account of the challenges to providing solutions to this problem. The relationships they built with local people were incredibly touching, and one of the highlights of the film. I was humbled to see how much this community cares for and takes care of each other. My one gripe, If you can call it that, is 8 weeks seemed awfully short to get a sense of what poverty is like. After the initial shockwave wore off, some of the guys felt like it was getting “easy.” My bet is if they were there for a year, new waves of emotion and challenges would hit them during different seasons. But nonetheless, I realize that would have been hard for these college guys who presumably need to go back to school, so I applaud their sacrifice and commitment to this project. All in all, this is a wonderful concept and beautifully executed. Anyone who wants to get a sense of why living in poverty is like—and the pros and cons of potential solutions—will truly enjoy this.
I enjoyed the film and it did impact me, however, I agree with those in poverty who watched this video and have negative reviews. They have a lot of great points and I don't think just a video can sufficiently show what it is like.
Hopefully, some changes occur soon, to where this will be a way of the past, or to where these people gain access to more land/tools and can begin to thrive off of that land (permaculture techniques, perhaps).
This is not living in poverty - this is living in a place where everybody earns average of 1$ ie; middle class If you live with 1$ in US, where you are comparing earnings to, that's then living in poverty
Reviewed in the United States on November 24, 2018
I was skeptical at first. A bunch of young white guys exploiting poverty to make a movie? But I was wrong and am so glad I took the time to watch this. It was eye-opening and they did an awesome job. I feel like I know those people and have a new understanding of how fortunate we are and I will definitely be checking out the website to see how to make a difference.
I want to Thank entire team for bringing up such good and high value content very much just like first hand experience. This documentary not only showed how tough they are living but also in a sense contrasted how fortunate all others are to have all the things around that we take granted for most of the times. I wish this new perspective that you all gained from documenting this film will further help you to best work on methods and strategies relating to your study, and I will make sure to check livingononedollar.org and see how I can contribute!