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After Innocence (2005)

tomatometer

91

Average Rating: 7.3/10
Reviews Counted: 46
Fresh: 42 | Rotten: 4

This understated yet emotionally devastating documentary lets the stories of its subjects speak for themselves.

89

Average Rating: 7.1/10
Critic Reviews: 19
Fresh: 17 | Rotten: 2

This understated yet emotionally devastating documentary lets the stories of its subjects speak for themselves.

audience

81

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 2,336

My Rating

Movie Info

'After Innocence' is an account of how several men freed from prison after being cleared by DNA evidence struggle to reintegrate into society.

Feb 6, 2007

New Yorker Films - Official Site External Icon

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All Critics (51) | Top Critics (23) | Fresh (42) | Rotten (4) | DVD (3)

After Innocence is a crusading documentary driven by DNA testing that's brought freedom for men who served years in prison for crimes they didn't commit.

March 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Houston Chronicle
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Eye-opening.

March 16, 2006 Full Review Source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic IconTop Critic

After Innocence is, without making it overly obvious, anti-death penalty on the grounds that a just society cannot afford to make any mistakes that we cannot attempt to rectify.

March 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Detroit Free Press
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Informative (we learn, for example, that exonerees are generally given no follow-up assistance upon release, as parolees are) and deeply moving.

February 10, 2006 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Each lost face in the documentary is a burning reminder of the human toll when our justice system succumbs to its imperfections.

February 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Sanders is more interested in specific human struggles than in larger political points, but she knows these men form a mosaic with a message that's unmistakable.

February 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

An advertorial rather than a solid piece of investigative journalism.

March 1, 2007 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Documentary shines a scientific spotlight on the criminal justice system's dirty little secret via ten tragic cases of mistaken identity, each an unfortunate rush to judgment.

February 5, 2007 Full Review Source: WBAI Web Radio
WBAI Web Radio

Both sorrowful and uplifting.

June 15, 2006
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

A rough but engrossing sketch of what freedom feels like, and what it costs, for seven men who've endured that national nightmare.

May 12, 2006 Full Review Source: Sacramento News & Review
Sacramento News & Review

The scope of the problem, with likely thousands of innocent people incarcerated thanks mostly to errant eyewitness testimony, should give pause to anyone who thinks that life is as simple as black and white, innocent and guilty.

April 7, 2006 Full Review Source: Oregonian
Oregonian

You'll probably like it and wish it were better.

March 9, 2006 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Despite its flaws After Innocence raises staggering questions about virtually every aspect of the criminal-justice system.

March 4, 2006 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

This is no-frills filmmaking and may be a little talky, but it's also very well-made, powerful stuff, and it should be seen by anyone who has questions about the American justice system.

March 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

[The] stories of injustice and perseverence [will] stick in the memory after watching this uncluttered and compelling film.

March 3, 2006
Salt Lake Tribune

...terrific agitprop journalism/analysis...

February 27, 2006

Sanders has an important message, unfortunately diluted by unimaginative shooting and insufficient editing.

February 11, 2006 Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan
San Diego Metropolitan

Not a special pleader but is fairly special, because Sanders gives it the pressure of straight moral conviction.

February 10, 2006 Full Review Source: San Diego Union-Tribune
San Diego Union-Tribune

The embittered men make fascinating subjects. Although innocent, they have been deeply scarred by their prison years.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

[Documaker] Jennifer Sanders builds a solid foundation in making the point that, sometimes, our system of justice does the wrong thing, no matter how well meaning.

January 21, 2006 Full Review Source: Reeling Reviews
Reeling Reviews

Audience Reviews for After Innocence

"Freedom is just the Beginning"

Alfred Hitchcock was once asked in an interview what his biggest fear was. He responded by saying that it was being falsely accused of a crime he didn't commit. After watching After Innocence, I can say be falsely accused and convicted of a crime would be one of the most terrifying things that could happen to a person. After a law class I took last year; I began to be totally opposed to the death penalty. Now, After Innocence just reaffirms my belief that the death penalty should not be used. There's just too much risk in executing an innocent man or woman. If you only execute one innocent man, I'd say the system failed. And you know that more then one innocent person has been put to death. It's a scary thought; being on death row or even just in prison for a crime that you didn't commit.

After Innocence dives into some of the people who's lives were affected by being wrongly convicted of a crime. After serving many years in prison, each person who is shown on this documentary had their convictions overturned because of DNA evidence that proves they didn't commit the crime. It shows how their lives never get back to normal. Each person has their own unique prison aftermath. It's hard to get work, a girlfriend and they were never compensated for their time. They continue fighting for compensation and for others that were also wrongly convicted. It's just a really sad and terrifying documentary to watch. Seeing a person who had to waste 22 years of their life inside a prison and come out without compensation is tragic.

This along with Witch Hunt, which touches on the same subject, will really change your frame of mind about the whole legal system. While this obviously isn't a fun movie to watch; it is an important one and also a very well-made documentary. More people need to watch After Innocence.
August 4, 2011
blkbomb
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

Life altering, one of the 10 most important films I've ever seen.
October 14, 2008
sportsphenom1

Super Reviewer

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

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