Kids For Cash is a riveting look behind the notorious judicial scandal that rocked the nation. Beyond the millions paid and high stakes corruption, Kids For Cash exposes a shocking American... See full summary »
The film opens up to the sound of fire engines and the squeals of children that evokes a kind of ominous feeling that foretells the direction of the film. We witness a parade of people celebrating the coming holiday season in this very small and outdated coal mining town in west Pennsylvania. This documentary is surprisingly filmed in 2012 even though one gets the feeling of being transported back to 1995. This community of people comes from a long line of very proud Polish and Irish immigrants. The hypocrisy of the film is that they are very opposed to the current movement of Hispanic immigrants into their small town, Shenandoah. Their racial views come into the spot light when the film centers in on an incident that had happened in the town. The director depicts the crime scene like a horror film leaving you on suspense. The dark images of the murder scene where a group of boys from the local football team beat a man of Mexican descent to death send chills through the audience. The viewer gets an inside look to the thoughts of one of the convicted murderers, Brian Scully who speaks as a naïve young boy. Throughout the movie you are conflicted with your feelings toward him as he seems to be a product of his environment held under pressure during the moments of the crime. Though he feels remorse for his actions, one is still unsure of how much he has learned. The film proceeds to show how this crime has affected the convicted, the families involved, and the town as a whole. The audience learns of the family of Luis Ramirez and the obstacles they have dealt with while living in America. The films juxtaposes Mr. Ramirez's home town in Mexico to Shenandoah to show the audience how similar the two towns are despite their cultural differences. One of the most compelling parts of the documentary are the scenes from a local protest, where community member's ferociously yell their opposing views on immigration and other racial ethnicities that seem to have "taken over" their town. The constant intolerance from the people of Shenandoah makes the audience understand how racial discrimination is still an issue in the United States. The director seems to have a reason for every style choice and organizational decision involved with the production of the film that makes the experience cohesive and interesting. Overall I feel this film does a great job of creating a compelling and objective view point for the viewer to create their own opinions.
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