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Criminal Justice


Criminal Justice



INCARCERATING US

Directed by Regan Hines

Exposes America's prison problem and explores various criminal justice reforms.

Incarcerating US exposes America's prison problem and explores ways to unshackle the "land of the free" through vital criminal justice reforms. With 2.3 million people behind bars, the U.S. has the largest prison population in the history of the world.

Through dramatic first-hand accounts, expert testimony, and shocking statistics, Incarcerating US asks fundamental questions about the prison system in America: What is the purpose of prison? Why did our prison population explode in the 1970s? What can make our justice system more just?

The film begins with a brief overview of U.S. prisons and the flawed policies that fueled unprecedented overincarceration. In many cases, these laws exacerbate problems they were designed to solve. Through both empirical evidence and the eyes of those tragically affected by the system for committing minor crimes, we see the failures of two major initiatives: the War on Drugs and mandatory minimum sentences.

Incarcerating US tells the story of America's broken criminal justice system through the eyes of those who created it, those who have suffered through it, and those who are fighting to change it. After decades of failures, now is the time to unshackle the land of the free.


DVD / 2016 / (Grades 9-12, College, Adults) / 84 minutes

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RETURN, THE

Directed by Kelly Duane de la Vega, Katie Galloway

After California's "Three Strikes" law was amended, thousands of lifers were suddenly freed, but re-entry presented problems for the lifers, their families and their communities.

In 2012, California amended its "Three Strikes" law--one of the harshest criminal sentencing policies in the country. The passage of Prop. 36 marked the first time in U.S. history that citizens voted to shorten sentences of those currently incarcerated. Within days the reintegration of thousands of "lifers" was underway.

THE RETURN examines this unprecedented reform through the eyes of those on the front lines--prisoners suddenly freed, families turned upside down, reentry providers helping navigate complex transitions, and attorneys and judges wrestling with an untested law. At a moment of reckoning on mass incarceration, what can California's experiment teach the nation?


DVD / 2016 / (Grade Level: 9 - 12, Adults) / 84 minutes

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EL POETA

Directed by Katie Galloway, Kelly Duane de la Vega

After his only son is murdered in the Mexican drug war, a mystic poet launches an international crusade to save his country.

EL POETA tells the story of renowned Mexican poet Javier Sicilia, who ignited mass protests and an ongoing movement for peace after the brutal murder of his 24-year-old son Juan Francisco - collateral damage in a drug war that has left 60,000+ dead since 2006 - the majority civilians.

Drawing on the philosophical, artistic and spiritual dimensions of Sicilia and his movement, EL POETA reinterprets the "hard news" horror story of the Mexican drug war as a deeply personal, poetic and at times even hopeful one, tracing Sicilia's path from poet and father to movement leader and international symbol of grief and redemption.


DVD / 2015 / (Grades 10-12, College, Adult) / 55 minutes

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WHEN JUSTICE ISN'T JUST

Director: David Massey

Directed by Oscar-nominated and NAACP Image Award winner David Massey, this dynamic documentary features legal experts, local activists, and law enforcement officers delving into ongoing charges of inequality, unfair practices, and politicized manipulations of America's judicial system. Additionally, the Black Lives Matter movement and citizens nationwide question the staggering number of police shootings of unarmed Black men and women.


DVD / 2015 / () / 40 minutes

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FACING FEAR

Directed by Jason Cohen

A former neo-Nazi skinhead and the gay victim of his hate crime meet by chance 25 years later, are reconciled and collaborate in educational presentations.

In this Academy Award-nominated short documentary, worlds collide when a former neo-Nazi skinhead and the gay victim of his hate crime attack meet by chance 25 years after the incident that dramatically shaped both of their lives. Together, they embark on a journey of forgiveness that challenges both to grapple with their beliefs and fears, eventually leading to an improbable collaborationíKand friendship.

FACING FEAR retraces the haunting accounts of the attack and the startling revelation that brought these men together again. Delving deep into their backgrounds, the roots of the ideologies that shape how they handle the reconciliation process are exposed. Self-doubt, anger and fear are just a few of the emotions they struggle through as they come to terms with their unimaginable situation.


DVD / 2013 / (Grades 9-12, College, Adult) / 23 minutes

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UNREAL DREAM, AN

Director: Al Reinert

From Oscar-nominated director Al Reinert, An Unreal Dream is the terrifying true story of Michael Morton, who spent over two decades in Texas prisons for a crime he didn't commit.

In 1986, Christine Morton was brutally murdered in front of their only child. After Michael was accused and convicted his son Eric, only three at the time, was raised by family members and eventually cut off all contact with the father he believed had killed his mother.

The Innocence Project, in partnership with John Raley, a Texas attorney working on his first ever criminal case, spent years fighting for DNA testing and investigating possible prosecutorial misconduct in Michael's case. Twenty-five years after the murder, DNA analysis of a bloody blue bandana found near the crime scene not only cleared Michael, but yielded a hit on a known felon who has since been charged with the murder of Christine Morton, along with the murder of another young woman two years later.

Upon his release in late 2011, Michael riveted the outside world with his lack of bitterness or anger. Instead, he reached out to his estranged son, and focused his newfound freedom on the fight for reform. An Unreal Dream tells his story, and sheds needed light on America's flawed criminal justice system.


DVD / 2013 / () / 92 minutes

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DHAMMA BROTHERS, THE

Directed by Jenny Phillips, Anne Marie Stein and Andrew Kukura

An overcrowded maximum-security prison is dramatically changed by the influence of an ancient meditation program.

Behind the high security towers and double row of barbed wire and electrical fence at Donaldson Correction Facility dwells a host of convicts who will never see the light of day. But for some of these men, a spark is ignited when it becomes the first maximum-security prison in North America to hold an extended Vipassana retreat, an emotionally and physically demanding course of silent meditation lasting ten days.

The Dhamma Brothers tells a dramatic tale of human potential and transformation as it closely follows and documents the stories of the prison inmates who enter into this arduous and intensive program. This film, with the power to dismantle stereotypes about men behind prison bars also, in the words of Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking), "gives you hope for the human race."


DVD (Color) / 2007 / (Grades 10-12, College, Adult) / 76 minutes

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