Parents' Guide to

Off the Rez

By Kari Croop, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Frank docu prompts questions about sports, race, and family.

TV TLC Reality TV 2011
Off the Rez Poster Image

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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Kids say (1):

Liking sports or basketball isn't a prerequisite for appreciating this no-frills coming-of-age story about a seriously talented girl who applies equal seriousness to the task of making her family and culture proud. As it turns out, Shoni Schimmel's story is engaging enough, no matter where your interests lie.

Eschewing editing tricks that could arguably improve the pacing, filmmaker Jonathan Hock largely presents the action as it unfolds, resulting in a story that feels real -- and, at times, appropriately bleak. Because the truth is this: In spite of Shoni's bright prospects, the realities of her family's struggles, both off the rez and on, are a palpable obstacle to her ultimate success. The film also reveals the sobering fact that Native Americans still grapple not only with racism but also with its lingering effects on their own self-worth.

TV Details

  • Premiere date: April 26, 2011
  • Network: TLC
  • Genre: Reality TV
  • TV rating: TV-PG
  • Last updated: October 14, 2022

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