2016-17 saw the worst prison riots in decades. Across the country the prisons estate exploded as campaigners and prisoners had predicted. A light was shone on the so-called prison crisis. But it’s not that prisons are in crisis, prisons are the crisis.
2016-17 saw the worst prison riots in decades. Across the country the prisons estate exploded as campaigners and prisoners had predicted. A light was shone on the so-called prison crisis, but it’s not that prisons are in crisis, prisons are the crisis. Injustice investigates the crisis, delving into the world of prisons, crime and the judicial system. The documentary interviews ex prisoners, activists, criminologists and even prison governors to ask: Who are the prisoners? Why are they there? What happens inside, and outside? What are prisons supposed to do and what do they actually do?
With more than 60% of prisoners suffering mental health problems, the majority being from broken homes, from poor backgrounds with little education or prospects we have to ask whether disadvantaging them merely deepens the problem rather than providing solutions.
Are prisons merely the tail end of social problems that have been left to fester?
Sociologists and criminologists explain the context of crime and criminalisation, with prisoners explaining their backgrounds and how their lives before and after prison unfolded. A prison governor explains that the lesson he learned is that most prisoners shouldn’t be there, and that it really could happen to anyone.
Injustice is not just another documentary. We reject the corporate media approach to prison films, thirsty as they are for cliche and unintended parody. Here there are no camera operators chasing after prison guards closing in on their prey as if we were in a wildlife documentary. Prisoners are human beings, not animals.
We didn’t want to ask the prison authorities for permission to make this film. We asked the prisoners instead.
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