The Central Park Five Sunday, 25 June 2017

The Central Park Five

Additional Info

  • Rating:

    M: Coarse language.

  • The pitch:

    One crime, six innocent victims.

  • Starring:

    Antron McCray, Raymond Santana, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Korey Wise, Michael Warren, Saul Kassin, Michael Joseph, Ronald Gold, Angela Black, Jim Dwyer, David Dinkins, Calvin O Butts III, Natalie Byfield, Craig Steven Wilder

  • Directed by:

    Ken Burns, David McMahon, Sarah Burns

  • Running time:

    119 minutes

  • Rated:

    M (Australia), NR (UK), NR (USA)

  • VIOLENCE/GORE:

    News reports and testimonial accounts of a brutal beating, rape. People describe attacking a woman, victimising her, striking her repeatedly with a tree branch, removing/handling articles of clothing, sexual assault (rape and sodomy). Racial attacks, rape, lynchings, subway shootings, killings, executions, murder, muggings discussed. Picture of a woman threatened at gunpoint. Reports of police brutality, intimidation. News story of a three-year-old boy shot and killed, news story of a pregnant woman stabbed to death. Graffiti, guns, armed police seen in newspaper reports. Stories of stabbing people, throwing rocks at cars/people, intimidating passers-by, attacking a homeless man (beating, glassing), stealing, throwing a man against a gate, punching/kicking people, grabbing/dragging a woman. Allegations of gang rape. Death penalty, rioting, unlawful assembly mentioned. Photos of lynched men; lynching, cutting off genitals, burning bodies mentioned. Spitting in face mentioned. A woman shouts then shoves a television camera. Blood/gore: Bleeding victim, fractured skull, loss of body fluids, hypothermia, lingering disability, virtually dead victim, stitches, cirrhosis mentioned. AIDS mentioned. Sheeted corpse, taped body outline, corpse in coffin, crime scenes, beaten/deceased victims shown in news reports. Bruising, scratches, bandages. Collapsed woman seen on stretcher.

  • SEX/NUDITY:

    Frequent discussion of sexual assault, sodomy, rape. Advertising billboards for adult establishments, clubs. Evidence photographs of nude pictures seen in court drawings.

  • VICES/DRUG USE:

    Drug-dealing, drug gangsters, crack, drug conviction mentioned. Smoking.

  • LANGUAGE:

    F-words, slang and actual terms for genitalia and bodily functions. Name-calling. Racial stereotyping. Religious exclamations.

  • THEMES:

    The Central Park Five, the Central Park jogger, Trish Meili, New York City, corruption, scandal, politics, racism, inter-racial violence, gangs, wrongful accusation, false confession, incarceration, institutionalisation, innocence, evidence, perjury, economic downturn, racism, vacated convictions.

  • HIDDEN EXTRAS:

    Courtroom and prison settings. Birds (pigeons), dogs. Sky-high aerial shots over city. Full moon. Estranged, sick, deceased fathers mentioned.

  • CRITICS LIKE:

    Well documented, detailed reconstruction of events. Righteous, compelling, fascinating, discomforting, enraging. Smart, fluid storytelling.

  • CRITICS DON'T LIKE:

    One-sided. Lack of testimony from many people who were involved with the case (including the victim).

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