Poverty is a problem that affects many individuals around the world. In general, poverty is characterized by an inability to meet one’s basic necessities. Despite Hollywood’s reputation for brightness and glamour, the issue of poverty has been explored in a slew of films. While some of these films are based on fiction, others are based on real-life experiences (and sometimes tragic stories). Despite the fact that most people prefer happy endings, films depicting poverty provide a window into a reality that is rarely spoken. These are the ten best films on poverty ever made.
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10. The Debt
Many people may not have heard of the 2015 film The Debt because it wasn’t a great box office success. Despite this, it’s still worth a look. Oliver (Stephen Dorff) is a banker who is divided between helping his company grow through land acquisitions and aiding a little Peruvian boy who is living in poverty. Gluttony and the depraved acts humans are willing to commit in the pursuit of money are central themes in The Debt.
9. The Stone Pillow
The Stone Pillow was a 1985 television movie that aired on CBS. It was also one of Lucille Ball’s final on-screen appearances. The picture was not a comedy, unlike most of her previous work. Instead, she played Florabelle, an elderly woman on the streets who strikes up a friendship with a young social worker determined to make a difference in her life.
8. Midnight Cowboy
Several years before the debut of the 1969 film Midnight Cowboy, a novel of the same name was published. The story revolves around Joe Buck (Jon Voight), a Texas dishwasher who decides to become a prostitute in New York City. He meets a conman played by Dustin Hoffman, who he develops a connection with despite their differences. It’s not just poverty in Midnight Cowboy that’s explored, but also the dark side of the world that often accompanies it. The film was a critical and commercial smash, winning three Academy Awards in all.
7. Hidden In America
TV movie Hidden in America was released in 1996 to illustrate the reality of poverty in the United States. Many Americans, while living in a country that is renowned for its affluence, are struggling to make ends meet. Beau Bridges plays Bill, a guy who has lost his career and had to cope with the death of his wife in the film. Although he first appeared to be a judgmental person, he soon recognized that poverty can be a difficult cycle to break.
6. The Saint of Fort Washington
Mental illness is one of the many factors that might cause a person to become homeless. The Saint of Fort Washington, for example, makes a strong case for this. Matt Dillon’s Matthew (Matt Dillon) is a young man living on the streets after struggling with the effects of schizophrenia. Jerry (Danny Glover), a homeless man, introduces him to the ins and outs of living on the streets. The Saint of Fort Washington was a big hit at the box office as well as a big hit with the critics.
5. The Soloist
Jamie Foxx has been best known for his humorous roles for the majority of his career. However, he has shown that he is capable of far more than just making people laugh over the years. One of the better examples is Soloist. It is based on the true story of Nathaniel Ayers, a violinist who developed schizophrenia and ended up on the street. Jamie Foxx plays Ayers, a character who experiences love, loss, and forgiveness in the course of his performance. Even though the film wasn’t a box office hit, it provides a moving portrait of what it’s like to struggle against the odds.
4. Oliver Twist
The 1933 film Oliver Twist, based on the Charles Dickens novel of the same name, is one of the most famous representations of poverty on screen. Oliver is a young orphan who is abused and ends up in the wrong crowd in the movie, which is set in England in the 1800s.
3. Slumdog Millionaire
Modern classic status has been accorded to the film Slumdog Millionaire, which was released in 2008. It is a rags-to-riches narrative about a young Indian child who grows up in terrible poverty but is given the opportunity to transform his life when he competes on the Indian version of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” in the movie. Slumdog Millionaire is one of those films that you can watch over and over again because it is both heartbreaking and heartwarming at the same time.
2. The Pursuit Of Happyness
“The Pursuit of Happyness” is one of the most memorable movies of 2006, and it portrays a true story about an unemployed single father named Chris Gardner (Will Smith). He gets kicked out of his flat after a sales job fails, but Chris doesn’t let that stop him from pursuing his ambitions and trying to land an executive-level position.
It’s common to think of Parasite as a thriller, but the truth is that it’s a fascinating look at poverty. Kim Ki-woo (Choi Woo-shik) is the protagonist of the film, which is set in South Korea. When he is hired to teach English to a child of a wealthy family, he sees a glimmer of hope. Kim devises a sly strategy to get jobs for his family, but what actually happens is something no one could have predicted.