Saturday, 1 November 2014

Gideon's Army

Gideon is the chap who caused the case that meant that everyone was entitled to a lawyer. And so Gideon's Army is about Public Defenders in the (American) justice system.

This movie focuses on the lives and jobs of Public Defenders and some of the cases they have to deal with. We get some of the people they are working for (the movie mainly shows us black men, I'm not sure if that's because of who was available, or some bias of the movie maker). Public Defenders have to put up with a lot of shit, and a lot of the time, you do wonder why they continue (not why they started, but why they put up with their clients). And many don't. But we are with those who do, and see their passion to continue.

Now, this is an interesting movie from that perspective of what they put up with, but... that's all there is to this movie. We don't see anything about the system, about why we need Public Defenders, what changes are happening (if any) to ease their burden or enable the system to work better (often people in this movie say that the system has problems), nothing along those lines. It's just example after example.

Basically, this movie raises the profile of Public Defenders, but I feel like it could have done more.


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