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Middle of Nowhere (2012)

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When her husband is sentenced to eight years in prison, Ruby drops out of medical school in order to focus on her husband's well-being while he's incarcerated - leading her on a journey of self-discovery in the process.


Ava DuVernay


Ava DuVernay
13 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Emayatzy Corinealdi ... Ruby
Omari Hardwick ... Derek
Edwina Findley Dickerson ... Rosie (as Edwina Findley)
Sharon Lawrence ... Fraine
Lorraine Toussaint ... Ruth
David Oyelowo ... Brian
Maya Dunbar ... Gina (as Maya Gilbert)
Bruce Katzman ... Averick
Troy Curvey III ... Rashad
Yvette Cason Yvette Cason ... Mrs. Hastings
Andy Earnest Spencer ... Bus Hustler (as Andy Spencer)
Romann Aric Romann Aric ... Jordann
Nehemiah Sutton Nehemiah Sutton ... Nickie
Nisa Ward Nisa Ward ... Fraine's Assistant
Dondre Whitfield ... Littleton


When her husband is sentenced to eight years in prison, Ruby drops out of medical school in order to focus on her husband's well-being while he's incarcerated - leading her on a journey of self-discovery in the process.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

prison | f rated | See All (2) »


You never know where love will take you. See more »



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some language

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site





Release Date:

1 September 2014 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

En mitad de la nada See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA


Box Office


$200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$78,030, 14 October 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$78,030, 14 October 2012
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


For this film Ava DuVernay won the Best Director Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, becoming the first African-American woman to win it. See more »


In Derek's parole hearing, Franie first summarizes that Derek has been in jail for 4 years and 2 months, then she says that he has served over 4½ years. See more »


Intertitle: 4 years later with good time
See more »


Featured in The 2013 Film Independent Spirit Awards (2013) See more »


Stormy Weather
Performed by Little Dragon
Composed by Little Dragon
Appears Courtesy of Peacefrog Records
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User Reviews

Middle of Nowhere goes on to impress

Middle of Nowhere ***1/2 (2012) 1hr. 41 min.

Ava Duvernay is one of a new exciting filmmakers in independent cinema, whose stories about relationships about black Americans and issues surrounding their spouses, parents, siblings, etc. and how complicated and loyal black women can be when it comes to black men. Some black women go through enormous sacrifices of personal happiness within themselves and in this film, shows how loyalty can lead to question one's purpose on earth, in which, that very dedication is tested, when she meets a man one day and she questions that very attachment to her significant other.

The story is about a young black woman, a registered nurse named Ruby (Emayatzy Corinealdi) who lives with her sister a waitress named Rosie (Edwina Findley Dickerson) and her young son. Ruby is paying for an attorney to represent a case involving Ruby's husband Derek (Omari Hardwick) who has been in jail for 4 years on a weapons charge. She loves him and is focused on having the life they planned before he was incarcerated when he is released from jail. When the parole hearing occurs, with Ruby being the attentive dutiful wife-- hears a bombshell in the courtroom. Ruby questions her commitment to the marriage, which leads to a budding romance with a Bus driver Brian (David Oyelowo). Brian knows that she is married but senses tension within the marriage by Ruby's nonverbal behavior and seeing a ring that appears on her left finger to be a wedding ring. Ruby then has to decide to either continue with her marriage to Derek or begin another romance with a new suitor. Ruby also has to deal with the relationship with her mother and her disappointment of her daughter's lifestyles choices.

The film is beautifully written by Ava Duvernay the dialogue is very poetic and introspective of the inner dialogue she gives Ruby, who is a woman who loves her husband, but has to deal with one obstacle after another because of her husband irresponsible behavior. Ruby represents a lot of black women who are dedicated spouses who put with a lot of nonsense of their boyfriends or husbands, because of the racist society that we live in. Many black women feel the black man in America today, get such a raw deal, by the systematic racism that exists in America. Despite years of laws that should have made discrimination less and less problematic, which has unfortunately, had limited effectiveness to curb racism in large numbers.

All the performances are quite good and Troussaint has great moment when she's at the dinner table, at her daughters house, she is disappointed with one daughter's choice of profession and an ex- boyfriend who is an absentee father and Rosie, not wanting Mother Ruth to spend time with her grandson and the other daughter Ruby, who is too loyal to a man who is not worthy of her daughter. "Middle of Nowhere" is a fine second feature and gives Duvernay the opportunity to make more intellectual and thoughtful movies, about people in complicated relationships and situations. I predict Duvernay will make more thought provoking films in the future years to come.

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