Recorded over six years, Raising Bertie delivers an authentic and tender portrait of the lives of three young boys as they face a precarious coming of age within Bertie County, a rural African-American community in North Carolina. This raw and starkly poetic vérité documentary weaves the young men’s stories together as the boys navigate school, unemployment, violence, first love, fatherhood, and estrangement from family members and mentors, all while trying to define their identities. Intimate access depicts an honest portrayal of the boys' perspectives and an in-depth look at issues facing rural America's youth and what happens in the everyday lives of young people caught in the complex interplay of generational poverty, economic isolation and educational inequity. Raising Bertie is an experience that asks us to see this world through their eyes and incites recognition and empathetic understanding of lives and communities too often ignored.
A co-production of Kartemquin Films and Beti Films. The film is funded in part by the MacArthur Foundation and Ford Foundation.