9000 Needles is a documentary about Devin Dearth’s recovery efforts and acupuncture treatments following a stroke in the brain stem. The movie has tremendous emotional impact and highlights Devin’s strength of will, the love a supportive family and community, and the deficits in the US healthcare system. 9000 Needles won numerous awards including best documentary at the Phoenix Film Festival, best feature length at the Docuwest Film Festival, and best documentary at the Temecula Valley International Film Festival.
The journey starts with Devin’s life as a body building champion and father. Following his stroke, his medical health insurance covers minimal basic care and he is dismissed without additional medical support. Devin is despondent and left without the hope of a recovery from the severe side effects of the stroke. Devin’s brother suggests traveling to Tianjian, China to receive integrated healthcare that incorporates Western medicine, physical therapy, acupuncture, herbal soaks, and round-the-clock care. It is a three month journey in China that marks Devin’s steps towards recovery.
Powerful and engaging, 9000 Needles received many positive reviews. Bob Weinstein of The Weinstein Company writes, “Riveting! An inspirational story brilliantly told.” This is a story of the personal journey of a man unwilling to give up and of a medical system that cares for the individual patient and includes every possible recovery mechanism.