ABOUT THE FILM
Sober Indian | Dangerous Indian is a documentary that chronicles the lives of four Lakota men living on the streets of Whiteclay, Nebraska, in the Summer 2013. Whiteclay was an unincorporated town with 12 residents and four beer stores that were selling 3.5 + million cans of beer per year, primarily to the residents of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Pine Ridge was a dry reservation in South Dakota, located less than 300 yards from the unincorporated town of Whiteclay.
Over the next three years, the documentary would be screened throughout the United States, from Stanford University to Georgetown University, and in recovery film festivals in New York City, San Francisco, and Cape Town, South Africa. Native American activist Frank LaMere and John Maisch attended many of these screenings. All of these events were important, but none more so than those that occurred on university campuses and churches across the State of Nebraska. The film would never be nominated for any cinematic awards, but it helped stir the hearts of Nebraskans to finally act.
On April 19, 2017, the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission voted unanimously to deny the renewal of all four beer licenses in Whiteclay. By sharing their struggles with addiction, these four Lakota men introduced the world to the impact that these exploitative beer sales were having on the families of those who lived in Pine Ridge.