Project Description

Cover for the film Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.

Fat, Sick, And Nearly Dead

2011 · Unrated · 1h 37m


100 pounds overweight, loaded up on steroids and suffering from a debilitating autoimmune disease, Joe Cross is at the end of his rope and the end of his hope. In the mirror he saw a 310lb man whose gut was bigger than a beach ball and a path laid out before him that wouldn’t end well— with one foot already in the grave, the other wasn’t far behind. Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead is an inspiring film that chronicles Joe’s personal mission to regain his health.

With doctors and conventional medicines unable to help long- term, Joe turns to the only option left, the body’s ability to heal itself. He trades in the junk food and hits the road with juicer and generator in tow, vowing only to drink fresh fruit and vegetable juice for the next 60 days. Across 3,000 miles Joe has one goal in mind: To get off his pills and achieve a balanced lifestyle.

While talking to more than 500 Americans about food, health, and longevity, it’s at a truck stop in Arizona where Joe meets a truck driver who suffers from the same rare condition. Phil Staples is morbidly obese weighing in at 429 lbs; a cheeseburger away from a heart-attack. As Joe is recovering his health, Phil begins his own epic journey to get well.

What emerges is nothing short of amazing – an inspiring tale of healing and human connection.

Part road trip, part self-help manifesto, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead defies the traditional documentary format to present an unconventional and uplifting story of two men from different worlds who each realize that the only person who can save them is themselves.

About the Filmmakers

Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead was produced by Reboot Media and directed by Joe Cross and Kurt Engfehr. Find out more about the film at


“This movie is very motivational! A bit pricey but honestly, if you’re trying to start your diet for the 100th time – I find watching a movie like this largely inspiring. My partner is a physician and loved this documentary – plans to watch when having low motivation with dieting.” – Danielle, Amazon

“The overall content is very useful and hits home how we all know but keep putting it off or not doing anything about weight gain and poor health until we have no choice. Poor health leads to nothing good in the long run.” – Michelle, Amazon

“I have actually watched this documentary several times in the last few years, and finally purchased it because it is so inspirational. I appreciated Mr. Cross’ candid confession about the state of his health and the fact that he freely admitted his awful health situation was his own fault (for the most part). His journey to “reset” his body and begin a new and healthier lifestyle to heal himself and to feel better is something anyone can relate to and admire…actually trying to emulate his example might be a lot harder (he had the luxury of taking 60 days pretty much off of work to travel and handle whatever issues might arise from his drastic diet change – a 60-day juice fast). Most people I know can’t do that. I did purchase a copy of Dr. Fuhrman’s Eat to Live book after seeing this film (he oversees the juice fast in the movie) and that was very informative, as well.” – MC Phillips, Amazon

“This is a very educational film for all people of all shape, weight, and sizes. Encouraging and inspirational. Gives proof that we really have the ability to make ourselves healthy once we determine for ourselves that our desire is for the bountiful and rewarding quality of life that healthy choices can provide.” – Minda, Amazon


Cover for the film Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.

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