“The Interruptors” by Director:  Steve James (2011) (“Hoop Dreams”) 

“The Interrupters” tells the moving and surprising stories of three Violence Interrupters who try to protect their Chicago communities from the violence they themselves once employed.

The Interrupters interrupt violence.

From acclaimed director Steve James and bestselling author Alex Kotlowitz, this film is an unusually intimate journey into the stubborn persistence of violence in our cities. Shot over the course of a year, “The Interrupters” captures a period in Chicago when it became a national symbol for the violence in our cities. During that period, the city was besieged by high-profile incidents, most notably the brutal beating of Derrion Albert, a Chicago High School student, whose death was caught on videotape.

The film’s main subjects work for an innovative organization, CeaseFire, which believes, as epidemiologists do, that the spread of violence mimics the spread of infectious diseases, and so the treatment should be similar: go after the most infected and stop the infection at its source.  2 hrs

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 99%

“It describes a specific set of organizers who perform conflict mediation. The focus of CeaseFire is street violence, which organizers try to stem through outreach workers and so-called violence interrupters who literally put themselves in harm’s way…Mr. James has put a face to a raging epidemic and an unforgivable American tragedy.”  New York Times