Parents' Guide to

Whose Streets?

By Renee Longstreet, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Riveting docu on racial politics has violence, swearing.

Movie R 2017 100 minutes
Whose Streets? Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 1 parent review

age 10+

Civil Rights History is Happening Now

Unfortunately this film is rated R which will prevent some parents from letting their children watch it. I think all children should see this film and discuss the issues it explores. The cussing in the film are words that most kids already hear in real life, and it is an honest and raw expression of the pain and anger of the people of Ferguson (and many other towns and cities). Most of the "violent" images in this film are the same type of violent images children see when learning about the Civil Rights Movement or the Holocaust... actually, I'm pretty sure there was more "violence" in the PBS documentary about the Black Panthers so I'm not sure why this earned an R rating. We have a duty to educate our kids about the world they live in so that they are prepared to address the inequities in our society. I highly recommend this film.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Compelling, disturbing, and at times inspirational, this film makes a strong case for peaceful activism by African-American citizens reeling from grief and futile attempts at institutional change. Brown's shooting is one of the key events that propelled the Black Lives Matter movement to prominence, and Whose Streets? clearly intends to document the movement's rise and significance by offering in-depth portrayals of some of those involved in Ferguson.

The directors do a masterful job of focusing their work, editing down what must have been an enormous amount of material. Their use of the film's featured characters is especially effective at eliciting a sympathetic response to what took place. Only a few brief shots of some of the faces of the young law enforcement officers -- who are quite obviously in far over their head -- reveal any of the ambivalence that those who were ordered to contain the protests were feeling. Though the film is divided into five sections, the divisions seem arbitrary; it works as a whole. A far cry from the national news media's take on the events -- which emphasized the rioting, fires, and civil unrest -- Whose Streets? is must-see viewing for mature audiences. It should promote thoughtful discussion and a deeper understanding of ongoing issues in a world still struggling with racial conflict.

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