August 5-6, 8-11 at 7:30pm, August 7th at 4:00pm
Dir. Steve James, 2011, 125 min.
Winner of the Special Jury Award at the Sheffield Doc/Fest, The Interrupters tells the moving and surprising stories of three "Violence Interrupters" who try to protect their Chicago communities from the violence they once employed. From acclaimed director Steve James and bestselling author Alex Kotlowitz (There Are No Children Here), this film is an unusually intimate journey into the stubborn persistence of violence in our cities. Shot over the course of a year out of Kartemquin Films, The Interrupters captures a period in Chicago when it became a national symbol for the violence in our cities. The city was besieged by high-profile incidents, most notably the brutal beating of Derrion Albert, a Chicago High School student, whose death was caught on videotape.
The film's main subjects, Ameena, Cobe and Eddie work for an innovative organization, CeaseFire, which believes that the spread of violence mimics the spread of infectious diseases, and so the treatment should be similar: go after the most infected, and stop the infection at its source. The singular mission of the "Violence Interrupters" — who have credibility on the streets because of their own personal histories — is to intervene in conflicts before they explode into violence. The Interrupters follows these three "Violence Interrupters" as they go about their work, and while doing so reveals their own inspired journeys of hope and redemption. "A gut-wrenching documentary" says Manohla Dargis of The New York Times.
A Cinema Guild release
Panel discussion following the Friday, August 5th screening with Harlem and Brooklyn based Interrupters. Speakers include Operation S.N.U.G.'s Robin Holmes (Project Director of Operations), Karim Chapman (Outreach Worker Supervisor), Courtney Bennett (Community of Government Relations for The New York Mission Society), local, Harlem based violence interrupters and Achisimach Yisreal, S.O.S. Outreach Worker/ Violence Interrupter, Derick Scott, S.O.S. Crown Heights Outreach Worker and Violence Interrupter Supervisor.
Official film site: http://interrupters.kartemquin.com/
Film trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXmm0MZLGxY
Video interview with director Steve James: http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/video/2011/jun/14/steve-james-the-interrupters-video