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New Review: The Least of These

May 4, 2009


The Least of These, a documentary that looks at the T. Don Hutto Residential Center, the family detention center outside of Austin, premiered at the SXSW film festival this year. But more importantly, for its distributor IndiePix, joined forces with SnagFilms to release the film out to the public for free. In fact, you can watch it below.

The film is co-produced and directed by Clark Lyda and Jesse Lyda and is also produced by Marcy Garriott. Interviews with families housed at the immigration center show that families in need, that come to America seeking asylum are often thrown into prison like surroundings and forced to wait. Children were given poor treatment and three activist attorneys sought to change what was happening.

Barbara Hines, a professor at the University of Texas School of Law, Vanita Gupta, ACLU, and Michelle Brane of the Women’s Refugee Commission take us through their investigation and extensive interviews, often quite touching with children and women as they attempt to tell their story on how they made it to the border, often escaping harrowing circumstances to be thrown into a prison according to US asylum law.

Although the effort of the three women helped prompt some changes, the larger issues remain unsolved and the documentary captures the problems facing immigrants in the US – problems that do not appear to be easily solved anytime soon. However, with docs such as this – at least there may be more awareness spread about the way people seeking asylum are treated.

SnagFilms launched almost one year ago, July 2008, and has embedded its theater widget into over 200 million webpages. Anyone can embed the films they provide, now well over 650 documentaries. The company works with distributors to provide an alternative to distribution, often working in tangent with a semi-theatrical release or festival circuit run. For The Least of These, SnagFilms worked with IndiePix and Cinema Guild two documentary distributors.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. May 4, 2009 12:34 am

    Excellent Blog. I’ve been reading along and just wanted to say hi. I will be reading more of your posts in the future.

    – Jason.

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