50min · Documentary · 18 April 2014
The city that Oprah and President Obama call home has become marred by murder. In response to its staggering homicide rate, locals have coined it "Chiraq" (a hybrid of Chicago and Iraq). In 2012, Chicago averaged 42 homicides per month with nearly 70% of deaths caused by guns. Gunland begs the question, "Why Chicago?" Most would believe that hip-hop and its glorification of violence, guns and carnage is to blame for Chicago's gun-toting culture; however, this film goes beyond the headlines & stereotypes to discover that much more lies beneath the surface. The documentary attempts to discover the real reasons behind why young men and women of color are dying at the hands of their peers. Chicago sits directly in the cross hairs of a $30 billion dollar drug trade. Half of all narcotics that enter the U.S. from Mexico can be traced back to the Sinaloa Cartel whose leader, "Jaoquin "El Chapo" Guzman calls Chicago his home. Last year Chicago's crime commission named Guzman "Public Enemy No. 1" and said his gang supplied most of the city's illicit drugs. As the saying goes where there is smoke there is fire and where there are drugs there must be guns. The documentary exposes similar contributing factors such as the connection between drug cartels & gun trafficking, discriminatory gun legislation, police involvement, unemployment and systemic issues within African-American culture to discuss how guns have become so readily available in The Windy City. Through revealing interviews with gang members, activists, investigators & families of gun violence victims, Gunland looks to restore hope and examine solutions.
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