They Call Us Monsters
They Call Us Monsters takes us for the first time inside The Compound, a high-security juvenile jail in California that holds youths that are being tried as adults for violent crimes. Juan, Jarad, and Antonio seem like ordinary teenagers – but they are also violent offenders, awaiting trials and sentencing. While waiting they enroll in a screen-writing class, to make a film in which they reimagine their futures without looming jail time. Are they just kids with potential and big dreams, or monsters? Director Ben Lear traverses the many layers in this emotionally powerful and frank film, deftly asking questions about the place redemption has in today’s world.