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Troop 1500 (2005)

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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 34 users  
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Their mothers may be convicted thieves, murderers and drug dealers, but the girls of Troop 1500 want to be doctors, social workers and marine biologists. With meetings once a month at ... See full summary »


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Title: Troop 1500 (2005)

Troop 1500 (2005) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Credited cast:
Darlene Grant ...
Herself (as Dr. Darlene Grant)
Ida ...
Kenya ...
Melissa ...
Susan ...
Caitlin ...
Jasmine ...
Jessica ...
Mikaela ...
Naomi ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Julia Cuba


Their mothers may be convicted thieves, murderers and drug dealers, but the girls of Troop 1500 want to be doctors, social workers and marine biologists. With meetings once a month at Hilltop Prison in Gatesville, Texas, this innovative Girl Scout program brings daughters together with their inmate mothers, offering them a chance to rebuild their broken relationships. Intimately involved with the troop for several years, the directors (Ellen Spiro and Karen Bernstein) took their cameras far beyond meetings to explore the painful context of broken families. Powerful insight comes from interviews shot by the girls themselves, which reveal their conflicted feelings of anger and joy, abandonment and intimacy-as well as the deep influence their mothers still have on them. Written by Ellen Spiro

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12 March 2005 (USA)  »

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Forgotten victims
4 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a wonderful film documenting the effect on girls with mothers in prison. The film is not an educational video and documentaries do not have to be entirely objective. In order to make a really moving documentary, the filmmakers necessarily have to get close to their subjects. These filmmakers did just that, spending months with the girls in Troop 1500 before even turning on a camera. The film follows the lives of seven girls, most in their pre-teens, and their incarcerated mothers. Troop 1500 is a Girl Scout troop in Austin, Texas that offers support to these girls and moms. The film is honest about why the moms are in prison (contrary to the previous review) and the failures of the program, as well as the successes. It is refreshing to see inmates portrayed as more than just one-dimensional bad people; this film shows the effects of incarceration on the children of prisoners.

In addition to just being a really interesting topic, the film is engrossing and entertaining. I thought the soundtrack was great. It's not supposed to be a depressing movie. It's about hope and love and life, and the tone is appropriately serious yet not melodramatic. I had the fortune of seeing this film in a class at UTexas Law School and had a Q&A with two of the social workers involved with the troop. They are very inspiring women who really care about these girls and their relationships with their moms, and have had some great success stories from the program.

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