24 Apr RIKERS: AN AMERICAN JAIL COMING TO PBS STATIONS IN MAY, 2017
Bill Moyers Considers the Human Toll of Mass Incarceration
Through the Lens of Rikers Island Jail
Coming to PBS stations in May, 2017, RIKERS: An American Jail brings viewers face to face with men and women who have endured incarceration. Their stories, told direct to camera, vividly describe the cruel arc of the Rikers Island experience—from the shock of entry, to the extortion and control exercised by other inmates, the oppressive interaction with corrections officers, the beatings and stabbings, the torture of solitary confinement and the many challenges of returning to the outside world.
With an introduction by Bill Moyers, this one-hour documentary was produced by his long-time colleagues and award-winning filmmakers Marc Levin and Mark Benjamin with Rolake Bamgbose. It is a film America’s crusading legal hero Bryan Stevenson recently called “powerful journalism, transformational art and an unmistakable indictment of the American prison system.”
The United States is facing a crisis of mass incarceration and the stories of Rikers Island Jail are all too common in jails across America. Similar violence, abuse and corruption make local headlines. The same issues stand in the way of swift and appropriate justice, turning jails into warehouses that detain the guilty and the innocent without distinction. Bill Moyers says, “For most of us, places like Rikers Island and the jails in American communities are out of sight and out of mind, foreign countries we never visit. What happens to the people inside is done in our name, with our tax dollars, and reputedly for our safety, but we are often blind to what goes on.”
RIKERS is a production of Schumann Media Center, Inc. and Brick City TV LLC in association with Public Square Media, Inc. Produced by Marc Levin and Mark Benjamin, with producer Rolake Bamgbose. Executive Producer, Judy Doctoroff O’Neill. Executive Editor, Bill Moyers.
Learn more at RIKERSfilm.org and on Facebook and Twitter @RIKERSfilm