nad 🔪’s review published on Letterboxd:
“I know you’ve seen things. Maybe had to defend yourself. But in the end you have the same heart. You gotta carry that with you out here okay?”
this is the most painful piece of media i’ve watched all year. Ava DuVernay has crafted a brutally honest look at the failure of the US justice system and how it destroys lives on a whim. Fairstein, Lederer and others responsible took everything from these five kids and ruined their chances. the racism runs so deep that they IMMEDIATELY blamed Tron, Korey, Yusef, Ray, and John for a crime they were near to but could not possibly have done.
you get a picture of how the families and whole community is affected by the unjust incarceration of innocent youths, and a whole episode circling in on the relentless system barely giving them a chance for rehabilitation either after getting out again. it’s designed to keep them inside and essentially does the opposite of reintegration. this is mandatory viewing, even if it’s incredibly hard to stomach. the last episode really put me through it.
DuVernay has given the exonerated five a voice in a time where we need to hear and see it more than ever. magnificent cast all around but Jharrel Jerome stands out with what is possibly my favorite performance of the year. harrowing beyond compare.