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“Being Free” Film worth the watch


A 45-minute documentary about recently released inmates is a detailed, honest look at three people traveling the country to talk about life after incarceration.

This is worth the time because viewers will get a news perspective on incarcerated individuals instead of the stereotypes.

“I can’t tell you where I’m gonna be in five years,” says Cordero Holmes. Uncertainty after being incarcerated is a common concern for released individuals. Often ostracized on their abilities to navigate the world, “Being Free” introduces the unseen causes and effects of the correctional system.

“Being Free” follows three hosts Cordero Holmes, London Croudy, and Hugo Daniel Gonzalez. All of whom were formerly incarcerated. With different backgrounds each of them tells their story on how they transitioned back to society and the hardships that come with it.

The documentary offered a traditional interview style, but conveyed the deep emotion and brought out viewer empathy.

In California the hosts interview Ken Oliver, who served 24 years in prison and nine years in solitary confinement. “Don’t let your circumstance define you. Define your circumstance,” says Oliver. Now Executive Director of Checkr, an unbiased platform used for background checks, Oliver uses the analogy of the system capturing his body but not his mind.

“I am a third generation convicted felon,” says Vonya Quarles, now Attorney and Executive Director of Starting over Inc. Quarles goal is to help reintegrate and reestablish status of formerly incarcerated individuals. “My overall goal is prevention,“ comments Quarles. Raising over one million dollars for housing for 1,600 people. Through this emotional interview we see Croudy being brought to tears on how successful Quarles’ program has become and that there is hope for people once they are released.

Through the documentary there is a sense of wanting change and how change starts with knowledge. Gonzalez often comments that without these opportunities he would not have the relationships he has with his son.

Overall “Being Free’ offers an uplifting and unique perspective. Rooting for the underdog in their pursuit to transition back to normal life, in spite of what society thinks of them. The documentary style creates almost an open panel style as if you are in the room with everyone. Informative and inclusive, “Being Free” is a film for everyone.

“Being Free” is available free on the Road Trip Nation website.


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