The Interrupters

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Stories of life on the mean streets of America’s inner cities have become far too familiar: does the world really need another movie, even a well-meaning documentary like ‘The Interrupters’, telling us how tough it is on the block? Well, as it turns out, yes. ‘Hoop Dreams’ director Steve James isn’t interested in bemoaning gang culture or pointing fingers at the cops – his film simply documents the daily grind of a group of ‘interrupters’, or conflict resolution experts, from Chicago’s CeaseFire initiative.

Most of James’s subjects are ex-bangers themselves, even articulate activist Ameena, the undoubted star of the piece, a woman so intensely self-possessed she can stand in the midst of a group of six-foot teenage thugs and still look like the toughest person in the room. ‘The Interrupters’ lacks the crowd-pleasing sports movie arc that fired ‘Hoop Dreams’ – this is, by necessity, a more fractured, disparate piece of work – but the political and emotional power behind it is impossible to ignore.

Release details

Rated: 15
Release date: Friday August 12 2011
Duration: 142 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Steve James

Average User Rating

5 / 5

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Paul

I saw The Interrupters at the Curzon Soho last night. Amazing film, It gripped me from the first minute, and didn't let go (at least up until the power cut at the cinema!)