Parents' Guide to

Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Wrenching, must-see docu probes racial violence in LA.

Movie NR 2017 140 minutes
Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992 Poster Image

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Even though the main events took place 25 years ago, the film feels distressingly current, with its focus on race relations and police brutality. Ridley goes to great lengths to connect the dots from 1982 to 1992, showing the rage that was bubbling just under the surface in Los Angeles and why it finally had to explode. The movie is long, well over two hours, but there's lots of ground to cover, and it never feels tiresome. Instead, it's heartbreaking. The film is anchored by detailed, often emotional interviews with people who were there, as well those who lost loved ones during the riots or other incidents that led up to them. The amazing trick of Let It Fall is the way everyone has a way to explain why they made certain decisions -- in hindsight, some of them were clearly the wrong call, but giving the interviewees enough time on camera humanizes them. You can see what they were thinking at the time, which is part of why the film is still, sadly, so relevant today.

Let It Fall doesn't address the current landscape. It doesn't have to, because so many of the issues it explores in depth are just as relevant today. The film details how the 1992 riots can be traced to incidents from a decade earlier. Now, more than two decades later, it's clear that the same issues are still at play. And, years from now, this amazing movie will probably still be useful to see how issues that are ignored can fester for a long time until they eventually, inevitably erupt.

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