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Synopsis: What is at the heart of the American Rodeo? Who keeps it alive and beating? Buckwild America
explores the subculture of the participants, patrons, and fans of the Rodeo. The film offers a
genuine portrait of several Rodeo contestants, working through different generations of rodeo



Run Time

7 minutes

Directed by

Maci Parker


Ryan Muina

Director's Statement

The idea for the film Buckwild America budded in the rich soil of North
Georgia, in a patch of grass off the Interstate known as Calhoun, Georgia. I grew up among men and women who found themselves in the wild. Planted in the foothills of the Appalachia, these people loved the land around them. They found something in animals that would always be wild, no matter how well domesticated. There wasn’t a morning a cow hadn’t escaped onto the road, slowing me down from getting to school. And not a summer went by without going to the local rodeo, despite how hot it was or how bit up by bugs you’d get.
I wanted to know what kept the people of Calhoun around animals that wouldn’t mind. The animals could even kill them (and so often tried.) I wanted to know if it was just my small town.
So I followed the rodeo to California. What I found out was that the urge to do something wild was maybe in everyone. There was something that felt American in being Buckwild.
I felt that oftentimes farmers who hailed from rural areas were misunderstood. Their beliefs and their culture, like many other groups, is looked down upon or gazed at in spectacle. While I agree that many beliefs should be challenged, it was important to me to try and paint an honest portrait of who these people were. After spending so much time being let into these people’s lives, I learned that one principal is universal: That there is a human longing to be with family. Anyone can relate to John Denver when he sings, “country roads, take me home.”

Director's Bio

Maci Parker was adopted from the Hunan Province of China and raised in rural America. She isn’t a film fanatic. She has a love for life which drives her to capture and retell stories. Film is simply a medium she is grateful to inhabit.
In 2021, she earned a Southeast Student Emmy for music video production. Currently, she is a student at the Florida State College of Motion Picture Arts.

Production Year


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