Mr. Positive: Carl Bentson

A documentary about a good neighbor who does his best to clean up the world, made by Mike Hazard and Emily Rumsey.


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"Lots of people like me. They love me. What I do to the neighborhood." --Carl Bentson

MR. POSITIVE is a half hour documentary about a good neighbor who never says a negative word about anyone or anything.

"Carl is like a light of the neighborhood. He loves to watch out for people. He is just good, and wants to make the world cleaner and better. He is the neighborhood," says Dr. Tim Rumsey, author and director of United Family Practice Health Center.

The late Vashti Risdall, foster mother of 162 children including Carl, says of her son in one scene, "I just call him an angel."

Looked at in one way, the documentary shows how a community creates good citizens. Bentson lives a good life with a disability which is never actually defined. Like the spokes of a wheel on his legendary bicycle, Carl is at the center of a network of support which makes the world go around.

Dr. Tim Rumsey and Carl Bentson

The documentary was chosen as Audience Favorite at Big Water Film Festival, played on public television with MNTV, was awarded Honorable Mention at Fargo Film Festival and has screened at Athens Film Festival and Sprout Film Festival. The documentary is being used by a variety of professionals in the disability field to educate people about self-reliance and community service.

Eight years in production, the film is co-directed by Media Mike Hazard and Emily Rumsey with music by Dan Rumsey. Media Mike says, "It's a community lesson for the whole world, a film which will touch people of all ages everywhere."

A project of The Center for International Education, this documentary has been created with support from Bridgeview School, Trilobyte Video Services, United Family Practice Health Center, Ken Burns, Tim Grady, Cossetta's, Wet Paint, Cherokee Bank and COMPAS.

A student at the school where Bentson works says, "Carl's favorite word is yeah."


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