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Tuesday 23 March 2010

In the Land Of The Free – A Chance to Win Tickets to Premiere!

In the Land Of The Free is out nationwide on March 26th and we have a pair of tickets available to the film’s premiere on March 24th, which includes a Q&A with special guest Robert King, and Director Vadim Jean. Read on to be in with a chance…

In The Land Of The Free… is a feature-length film documenting the story of the Angola 3. During the 1970s, the Angola 3 protested against continued segregation, corruption and abuse facing the largely African American prison population within the Louisiana penitentiary, Angola. The prison is so named as it stands on the former site of a slave plantation, the workers of which hailed from Angola, Africa. This gives you the first insight into the driving force of the feature. Shortly after speaking out about their conditions, and under suspicion of affiliation with the Black Panther Movement, Herman Wallace and Albert Woodfox were subsequently convicted for the murder of a prison guard, Brent Miller.

There was no physical evidence against them. The main eyewitness was bribed with a carton of cigarettes every week and promised his freedom by the warden in exchange for testifying. A convicted rapist, he was sent to the lowest-level security section of the prison, and subsequently released into the community. Another eyewitness was a legally blind and a sociopath. A bloody fingerprint from the scene was shown not to belong to Herman or Albert and yet never tested against the rest of the prison population. Throughout the film, you constantly feel like there is almost no mystery to be solved – the evidence was there, and was point-blank ignored. Here lies the frustrating truth about this story – the solution has been staring officials in the face for nearly 40 years, and still a campaign is needed in order to bring the true murderers to justice and to end the inhumane conditions of the remaining Angola 2.

Albert and Herman have now been in solitary confinement for 37 years, in which time they have spent 23 hours of each day in a 6 x 9 foot cell. Shockingly, this is likely to be considered the most extensive stretch in solitary confinement known in history, even more than any countries ruled by dictatorships.

Robert King was also imprisoned in solitary confinement for 29 years; though the crime he was said to commit was an impossible act for him to have performed as he was not even imprisoned at Angola during the time of the crime. Finding ways to continue to keep him incarcerated in solitary confinement “under investigation”, the prison officials clearly ignored all ideas of human rights for 29 long years until his release.

The film depicts the disturbing truth of not just the story of the Angola 3, but about prison life in Angola, Louisiana; a dangerous and terrifying place to be. Institutionalized racism, gang wars, power games and rape make up the day-to-day survival of the inmates throughout the documentary, surrounding the plight of the main protagonists in genuine context. With chilling images of the tiny cells and the intimidating prison walls, the film truly gives a sense of the fate that has been assigned to Wallace and Woodfox, indicating the seriousness of their solitary entrapment.

The winner of the premiere tickets will also be invited to attend a Q&A session after the film in which Robert and ITLOTF director Vadim Jean will take the audience member’s questions, the winner will also receive a copy of Robert’s inspirational book From the Bottom of the Heap. There are also In The Land Of The Free t-shirts available for 3 runners up.

For your chance to win just answer the following question:

Who directed In The Land Of The Free?

Please send your answer to Alexis Smith at office@aestheticamagazine.com by 2pm on 23 March. Hurry, don’t miss out!

In The Land of the Free is out nationwide on March 26th, and is most definitely worth going to see. For further information please visit the website:

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