Dir. Steve James. 2011, 162 mins. Digital projection (Original cut). This collaboration between director Steve James (Hoop Dreams) and author Alex Kotlowitz (There Are No Children Here) is a towering achievement in both reportage and cinema. It tells the amazing stories of three former street criminals who attempt to protect their Chicago communities from the violence they once harbored and helped to perpetrate. Following the “Violence Interrupters” Ameena Matthews, Cobe Williams, and Eddie Bocanegra into areas of percolating tensions and erupting conflict, the viewer is given an eyewitness look at the stubborn persistence of violence in our cities, and at the impassioned, charismatic people who are putting their lives on the line in order to make a difference. Winner of top honors at the 2012 Independent Spirit Awards and Cinema Eye Honors.
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