Branson documentary goes behind the music, finding hardships, patriotism and past persevere - InfoNews

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Branson documentary goes behind the music, finding hardships, patriotism and past persevere

In this July 4, 2008 image from video provided by David Wilson, Bill Lennon, left, and his sisters Diane, center left, Peggy, center right, and Janet, right, who were a household name to millions during their heyday on the Lawrence Welk show, sing the The Star-Spangled Banner with unidentified family members on the family ranch near Branson, Mo. The Lennon's are one of four families living in the Branson area that documentary filmmakers David Wilson and A.J. Schnack followed over five years to produce “We Always Lie to Strangers,” a middle America, flag-waving, family-friendly celebration of musical variety shows and early-bird dinner specials. The documentary will be distributed nationally in 2014. (AP Photo/Courtesy David Wilson)
December 27, 2013 - 8:38 AM

ST. LOUIS - Documentary filmmakers A.J. Schnack and David Wilson knew it would be easy to make fun of Branson, middle America's flag-waving, family-friendly celebration of musical variety shows and early-bird dinner specials.

The Midwest natives felt a stronger obligation to dig beneath the surface and portray local performers and town leaders as more than aw-shucks Ozark hillbillies.

The result is "We Always Lie to Strangers," a new film that tells a more nuanced story of how the southwest Missouri resort is dealing with the aftermath of an economic recession, an aging audience and performance troupes whose gay cast members live a version of "don't ask, don't tell" among their conservative Christian neighbours.

The documentary will be distributed nationally in 2014. It kicked off the annual St. Louis International Film Festival in November.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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