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Video Reviews

These video resources have been reviewed on Restorative Justice Online.

Video Review: Being with the energy of forgiveness: Lessons from former enemies in restorative dialogue
reviewed by Dan Van Ness: 27 Minutes; Producer: Mark Umbreit; 2013 In these days, mentioning of the word ‘forgiveness’ in a support group of severe-crime victims can set off an electrical charge that fills the air. But there are some victims, with the help of restorative justice facilitators, who choose to meet with their offenders in order to find greater peace within themselves. What is it that drives such victims forward? Drawing from over three decades of experience with facilitating dialogue for victims and offenders, Dr. Mark Umbreit has produced this very helpful documentary that explores the meaning of, the possibilities for, and the processes that allow forgiveness to happen even if the words are never spoken. This is especially true for victims of serious offenses. In many ways, he says, forgiveness often operates like a positive source of energy that can overcome the negative energies stemming from a tragic crime.
Restorative justice is the law
by Dan Van Ness Heartspeak Productions is a remarkable Canadian group that describes itself as "on a continual quest to learn about & share the principles and best practices of restorative justice." It does this by creating excellent videos exploring dimensions of restoration. Fraser Community Justice Initiatives Association is a community NGO also in Canada that for 25 years has developed programs and training that help people in conflict find good resolutions.
Face to Face
from Claire Low's article in the Canberra Times The film deals with the restorative justice system that follows a young bloke deliberately rear-ending his boss's car. It is is based on a play of the same name by Australian playwright and screenwriter David Williamson, who was in turn inspired by real-life restorative justice sessions. Rymer said, ''When I read the play, I laughed, I cried. I couldn't believe that I could ever care so much about such an ordinary scenario.''
Restorative Justice: Rooted in Respect
Reviewed by Lynette Parker Producer: Shawn Kramer Hunter©2010 Mennonite Central Committee In Restorative Justice: Rooted in Respect, restorative justice practitioners and writers discuss the values and applications of the concepts. The 26-minute video starts with the following definition of restorative justice. “Restorative justice provides a framework and approach to ensure all people are treated with dignity and respect as we seek to live in community with one another. “The approaches empower us to be responsible for our actions and provide ways of holding one another accountable as we live and work together.”
Forgiveness: Human or Divine?
from Josh Ruxin's entry on Huffington Post: Earlier this month the film As We Forgive, a documentary about Rwanda, was released on DVD (check out the trailer here). It does not chronicle the 1994 genocide, but what has come after: Rwanda's struggle to rebuild itself.
Video Review: Concrete Steel & Paint
The documentary tells about the thorny evolution of an art project meant to unite inmates and the community, which started as a mere sketch of an idea in the minds of the inmates of Graterford State Prison.
Video Review: The Transformation of West Philadelphia High School: A Story of Hope
Video Review: On the Road Together: Teen Driving
In conjunction with the St. Croix Valley Restorative Justice Program, a man and a family tell about their experiences with automobile crashes to try and help teens understand the impact that driving accidents have on everyone.
Video Review: The Amy Wall Story
When a drunk driver hit the car driven by seventeen year old Amy Wall, her family was plunged into grief. For Joe Avila, the man driving the car that killed Amy, the days following were filled with despair as he awaited the court proceedings. Yet, a meeting between Joe and Amy's family organised by the Victim-Offender Reconciliation Program out of Fresno, California, helped them both find the peace they so desperately needed. This video, recorded at the 2009 Restorative Justice Conference held at Fresno Pacific University, allows Joe Avila and Derrick Wall tell their stories of the crime, meeting with each other, and healing.
Video Review: An Introduction to Restorative Practices at Endeavour High School
This video describes the positive results of restorative practices implemented in a school with behavioral and performance problems in England.
Video Review: The Meaning of Life
Several inmates at an experimental prison in Canada relate the stories of their lives both in and out of prison, focusing particularly on what they think of the restorative justice practices modeled at the prison.
"Livability Crime" video review
By Dan Van Ness Livability Crime. Restorative Justice Community Action. 7:08 minutes. This brief You Tube video describes a programme in Minneapolis operated by a local nonprofit organization called Restorative Justice Community Action (RJCA) in cooperation with the courts. When defendants are charged with “livability crimes” (drugs dealing, alcohol use, prostitution, vandalism, noise, disorderly conduct, disturbing the peace, public urination and littering) the court offers them the opportunity to meet with community members instead in a community conference.
Video Review: Late Fragment
Late Fragment offers an interactive DVD experience for viewers to see not only interactions in a restorative process but also the complex stories of individuals trapped into violence and trauma.
Video Review: Building Our Community: A Film about Restorative Practices.
Building Our Community is a 15-minute video highlighting the use of restorative practices in Collingwood Primary school located in Hull, UK. Teachers, students, administrators and parents discuss the impact on the school environment and individual students of using circles and conferences.
Movie Review: TAKE
TAKE is a full-length feature film being released July18 in New York and rolled out into other US cities and London through September. It stars Minnie Driver (Ana) and Jeremy Renner (Saul) as two people whose lives cross and are bound together during a bungled robbery by Saul in which Ana's son is killed.
Video Review: Choices: on the way to peace
Choices: on the way to peace is a three session video driven small group study on issues related to forgiveness and reconciliation.
Video Review: Facing the Demons
Facing the Demons is the story of a restorative conference held in a murder case.
Video Review: Achieving Balanced and Restorative Justice in Pennsylvania’s Juvenile justice System
This 23-minute video explores the principles and programmes of the Balanced and Restorative Justice initiative in the juvenile justice system in Pennsylvania.
Video Review: Heartspeak Productions on You Tube
Heartspeak Productions creates multimedia presentations promoting restorative justice values and practices. Its documentary A Healing River has received good reviews. Heartspeak Productions has recently begun posting clips from that documentary and other sources on You Tube.
Video Review: Repairing the Harm: Restorative Justice
Repairing the Harm is a 30-minute documentary discussing restorative justice concepts and uses in various settings.

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