We live in a country that is
addicted to incarceration
as a tool for social control.

James Bell


  • I Found Out Who I Am

    Nichole Portillo discusses her struggles with alcoholism, a difficult relationship with her mother, and how she talks about being incarcerated with her 4-year old son. 

  • I Am Not Damaged Goods

    Nearly 90% of women who are incarcerated are survivors of sexual or domestic violence. Kesia Martinis shares her story about overcoming trauma and addiction to find healing. 

  • Bethany On the Outs

    We recently caught up with Bethany Vollmer, one of the principal characters in the film. She shared how her life has been since her release last year.

  • Breaking Bonds, Making Bonds

    William Rentie, who plays a central role in the film, recently got released and is now rebuilding her relationship with his 18-year old son.

  • Meditation Behind Bars

    Five Keys Charter School integrates transcendental meditation into a new approach to criminal justice.

  • Khalil Cumberbatch Interview

    We spoke with Khalil Cumberbatch, one of our advisors for the film. Formerly incarcerated for 6 years, he credits education in prison for developing his leadership skills and empowerment. 

  • Nobody Fits Here

    “Nobody fits here. This is temporary,” says Maisha Lake, a literature teacher at SF Sheriff’s Dept. Five Keys Charter Schools Inc. Watch this moving conversation between Maisha and her students about self-sabotage and what it really takes to change.

  • Meet Juno

    Meet Juno, the 12-year old pug, in a short video we produced about a program at Five Keys charter school that bring dogs inside the jails to help teach ESL and low level literacy students.

  • Keith Kimmons

    Keith Kimmons at the Five Keys Charter school graduation. “After dropping out of high school and being in and out of drug programs, I can finally say at 59 years old that I have completed something.”

  • Tyson Amir

    Tyson Amir, a teacher at Five Keys Charter School (and hip hop artist), performs a spoken word piece based on the stories of many of his students inside the jail.

  • The Education Effect

    A short, animated video that spells out the big picture of mass incarceration’s impact on society, and offers a vision of the change that is possible.

  • The PBS series POV partnered with the online video journalism studio Storyhunter to commission a series of short web documentaries about the achievements and challenges of young black males in the United States, in conjunction with their presentation of the film American Promise. We produced this short documentary as part of that series.


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