The Betrayal of America's Immigrants
Exposé of the horrifying results of the 1996 immigration law.
This film illustrates the most recent wave of anti-immigrant sentiment in the United States. Through a close look at the personal impact of new immigration laws, this film depicts the severity of current detention and deportation policies. Lives are changed forever, as legal residents find themselves being torn away from their American families and sent to countries they barely know. For political asylum seekers, dreams are put on hold, as they are kept for years in county jails that profit from their incarceration.
Directed by David Belle and Nicholas Wrathall
Produced by Crowing Rooster Arts
Executive Producer: Katherine Keane
A half-hour version and Spanish version are available.
Grade Level: 10-12, College, Adult
US Release Date: 2000
Copyright Date: 2000
DVD ISBN: 1-59458-418-4
VHS ISBN: 1-56029-880-0
"Through intimate, often passionate interviews, and shocking footage of detainees' treatment behind bars, filmmakers Belle and Wrathall build a powerful argument for the urgent need to reform immigration laws before more lives are ruined and more families torn apart."
Human Rights Watch Film Festival
"ABANDONED looks at a 1996 law that allows for the Immigration and Naturalization Service to imprison legal permanent residents and asylum applicants. 'They can't do that,' say the astounded victims of this unjust law -- and so will you."
"An eye-opening experience for anyone who believed America's immigration laws were fair and basic to the cause of those seeking freedom in the United States. Using documented cases of legal immigrants, some of whom have spent nearly their entire lives in the U.S., the film makers show how flawed the legal system has become during the past decade. If you had any doubt xenophobia was a thing of the past, I strongly recommend you watch this film."
Ken Muir, Professor of Sociology, Appalachian State University
"A powerful argument for the urgent need to reform immigration laws." Human Rights Watch Film Festival
Awards and Festivals
Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award
Bronze Plaque, Columbus International Film Festival
Human Rights Watch Film Festival
South by Southwest Film Festival
Philadelphia International Film Festival
Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
Vermont International Film Festival
Seoul Human Rights Film Festival
Honorable Mention, South Bronx Film and Video Festival
Stony Brook Film Festival
Crested Butte Reel Fest
Fordham Univ. School of Law, Lawyers Committee for Human Rights
Hope & Dreams Film Festival
Louisville Film Festival
Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival
Maryland Film Festival
Bellingham Human Rights Film Festival
Migration and Refugees
|Rain in a Dry Land|
Two Somali Bantu families leave behind a legacy of slavery in Africa and find new homes in urban America.
A Great Wonder
Documents the difficult transition of three of the "Lost Boys and Girls" of Sudan to life as immigrants in Seattle, WA.
The Tree that Remembers
Extraordinary film explores the lives of Iranian refugees who cannot escape painful memories.
In the Name of Safety
False imprisonment violates due process in Bangladesh.
The Man We Called Juan Carlos
Chronicles the violent history of Guatemala and life of Wenceslao Armira, a Mayan father, farmer, teacher, guerilla, priest and champion of human rights.
Paying the Price
John Pilger exposes the devastating effect that UN sanctions had on the children of Iraq during the 1990s.
30 Frames a Second: The WTO in Seattle
Photojournalist's personal odyssey through the streets of Seattle during the WTO meeting.
Counting on Democracy
An examination of the fiasco in Florida in the context of the history of voting rights violations.