The conflict in Afghanistan is frequently described as America’s longest war, but a less visible war has been going on for over forty years at home and abroad, costing countless lives, destroying families, and inflicting untold damage on future generations of Americans. The War on Drugs has accounted for more than 45 million arrests, made America the world’s largest jailer, and damaged poor communities at home and abroad. Yet for all that, drugs are cheaper, purer, and more available today than ever before. Filmed in more than twenty states, Eugene Jarecki’s The House I Live IN captures heart-wrenching stories from individuals at all levels of America’s War on Drugs. From the dealer to the grieving mother, the narcotics officer to the senator, the inmate to the federal judge, the film offers a penetrating look inside America’s longest war, offering a definitive portrait and revealing its profound human rights implications. While recognizing the seriousness of drug abuse as a matter of public health, the film investigates the tragic errors and shortcomings that have meant drug abuse is treated as a law enforcement problem that has led to the creation of a vast machine that feeds largely on America’s poor, and especially on minority communities. Beyond simple misguided policy, The House I Live In examines how political and economic corruption has fueled the war for decades despite persistent evidence of its moral, economic, and practical failures. “Jarecki’s film effectively weds rhetorical outrage to well-researched fact….he’s assembled a damning collection of evidence that can’t be ignored…..but Jarecki’s movie serves not only as a valuable civics lesson that may or may not steer public debate in new directions, but as a powerful piece of anguished filmmaking in its own right.”—Andrew Schenker, Slant Magazine. Unrated. 108 minutes.
Tickets ($8) can be purchased online at http://miff.org/
The Maine International Film Festival’s MIFF in the Morning is a winter film series featuring a diverse selection of American independent and international documentary and narrative films. Screenings are on designated Saturday and Sunday mornings in January, February and March at Railroad Square Cinema in Waterville. For more information call 207-873-4021.
MIFF in the Morning is presented by Maine Film Center, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to enrich, educate, and entertain the community through film and art. Maine Film Center also presents the Maine International Film Festival (MIFF) in July and recently announced its purchase of Railroad Square Cinema.