by Wanda Sabir
Though the story of incarceration is always hard, it is more sobering when those affected are children. What if those youth convicted had an pportunityo to reimagine their lives and interrupt and rewind the script? What would the scenario look like? Who would star in the feature?
Ben Lear’s “They Call Us Monsters” 82 mins. (2017) is an invitation into such a story. There we meet Jarad, arrested at 16, Juan, arrested at 16, and Antonio, arrested one month after his 14th birthday. All the young men are facing minimally 90 years to life, Jarad 200 years.
The Compound, where LA County boys are held, is a jail within a jail at Sylmar Juvenile Hall in Chino, San Bernardino County. The boys are separated from general population for the severity of the violent crime they are convicted of; nonetheless, they are still kids: playful, immature and filled…
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