"Opening an aperture into a process so ego-stripping that it feels unseemly to witness, The Work is enlightening yet also punishing."
"Say what you will about prison's capacity to reform, but this documentary makes clear that in its own special way, the 'work' is working."
"By simply watching the participants talk about their feelings, sometimes in the vaguest of terms, McLeary illustrates how men build strong façades to conceal their pain from others and themselves."
Director: Jairus McLeary & Gethin Aldous
Runtime: 89 min
GENRES: Documentary, Psychology, Incarceration
Set inside a single room in Folsom Prison, THE WORK follows three men from outside as they participate in a four-day group therapy retreat with level-four convicts.
Over the four days, each man in the room takes his turn at delving deep into his past. The raw and revealing process that the incarcerated men undertake exceeds the expectations of the free men, ripping them out of their comfort zones and forcing them to see themselves and the prisoners in unexpected ways.
THE WORK offers a powerful and rare look past the cinder block walls, steel doors and the dehumanizing tropes in our culture to reveal a movement of change and redemption that transcends what we think of as rehabilitation.