More praise has been flooding in for The Interrupters ahead of this Friday's openings in London and our hometown of Chicago (we're also excited to confirm that the film has been extended for a 3rd week in New York!) Here's a brief recap of some of the week's excitement and stunning reviews.
Legendary Chicago film critic Roger Ebert gave the film a 4 star review, calling it the "most important film" of director Steve James' career and then tweeting that "there may not be a better documentary this year." His enthusiasm was matched by Time Out Chicago's A.A. Dowd, who states that the film's celebrated barbershop scene "is more powerful than anything you’ll see in a fiction film this year," and by Ray Pride in NewCity, whose superb review describes the film as "two hours of shocking, breathtaking, heart-filled, novel-dense storytelling." The Chicago Reader's Andrea Gronvall also gave the "stirring" film 4 Stars and we would also like to highlight Richard Corliss' incredible review in TIME magazine from last week.
But perhaps the strongest view in favor of the film came from CeaseFire's own Tio Hardiman in a lengthy Chicago Sun-Times feature by Mike Thomas, in which Tio boldly claims that "We delivered a masterpiece for the world to recognize!"
Tonight Steve James and Alex Kotlowitz will appear with Ameena Matthews in a live recording of Chicago Live! at the Chicago theater, and also with Cobe Williams on WTTW PBS' Chicago Tonight. On Friday, all of the principals from the film on and off camera will then appear at both opening night screenings at the Gene Siskel Film Center and at many other nights during the two week run. Get tickets.
Earlier this week Steve James was in London promoting the film quite unexpectedly amid riots and violence - prompting some fans to wish the city had its own interrupters! The chaotic atmosphere was further added to by a power cut that 'interrupted' a packed preview screening, resulting in Steve and the crowd triumphantly taking to the streets for an impromptu Q&A! The following night a successful full screening did take place in London's East End. Given the strangely coincidental timing of the film's release, Steve was asked for his opinions on the matter both by BBC World News, and regular film programs such as BBC Front Row and the Guardian Film Podcast.
UK critics have been united in their praise of their film, including Sight & Sound magazine, who named The Interrupters their "Film of the Month." Here's a sample of some of the other glowing reviews:
- "This epic documentary repeatedly brought tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat. It’s like a real life episode of The Wire, compelling and authentic, swinging back and forth between hope and despair." - Tom Charity, LOVEFiLM.
- "Inspirational and extremely moving, this is a gripping, powerful and important documentary that demands to be seen. Don't miss it. 5 Stars." - Matthew Turner, ViewLondon.co.uk
- "A thoughtful approach to thoughtless acts, and well worth your time. 4 Stars" - Catherine Bray, Film4.
- "The political and emotional power behind it is impossible to ignore. 4 Stars" - Tom Huddleston, Time Out London.
- "Knuckle-biting reportage, incisive on both the causes and consequences of violence" - Kevin Harley, Total Film.
- "A titanic piece of documentary filmmaking destined to have a real impact." - Matt Bochenski, Little White Lies.
See the full list of UK and US cities scheduled for The Interrupters.
With a noted tradition of nurturing emerging talent and acting as a leading voice for independent media, Kartemquin is building on more than 45 years of history as Chicago’s documentary powerhouse.
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