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Crips and Bloods: Made in America

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jim Brown, Forest Whitaker, Tom Hayden, Todd Boyd, Gerard Horne
  • Directors: Stacy Peralta
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Docurama
  • DVD Release Date: May 19, 2009
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001O7R74K
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #137,048 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Crips and Bloods: Made in America" on IMDb

Editorial Reviews


Rival L.A. gangs the Crips and Bloods have permeated deep into American pop culture including film, television, and music epitomizing wanton violence and hopelessness. Regardless of how gritty gang life is portrayed in entertainment, nothing can compare to the disturbing and frightening reality of life in South Central Los Angeles. Stacy Peralta's (Dogtown and Z-Boys, Riding Giants) chilling documentary Crips and Bloods: Made in America is a peek into their world, setting out to uncover why the rivalry was created and continues. It begins with a history lesson of the area and how racism, segregation, constant police monitoring, unemployment, broken homes, and civil unrest (e.g., the Watts riots) sowed the seeds of animosity, tension, and violence. The younger generation in the 1970s gravitated towards gang life seeking acceptance, identity, community, and protection. But as the gangs grew larger they became more territorial. Guns were eventually introduced, then drugs, leading to the 30-year war that has claimed the lives of over 15,000 people, just miles away from Beverly Hills. Combining archival footage and loads of candid interviews from existing and former members, Crips and Bloods is a gripping and honest telling of a horrible situation. --Rob Bracco

Product Description

South Los Angeles is home to two of America's most infamous African-American gangs: the Crips and the Bloods. On these streets over the past 30 years, more than 15,000 people have been murdered in an ongoing cycle of gang violence that continues unabated. In MADE IN AMERICA, renowned documentarian Stacy Peralta blends gripping archival footage and photos with in-depth interviews of current and former gang members, historians, and experts, documenting the emergence of the Bloods and the Crips, but also offering insight as to how this ongoing tragedy might be resolved.

Customer Reviews

That seems to be the main question, and this film doesn't really address it.
Charles Curtis
Law Enforcement could gain benefit from the movie in training sessions as it gives historical perspective and shows gang members as being human beings with feelings.
B. Connor
While watching, you really get the sense of how someone might feel like everyone hates them, which would definitely trigger one to hate back.
Darth Mortis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Jim Van Cise on August 22, 2009
Format: DVD
I was skeptical. What does a blonde (now grey) former professional skateboarder (now film maker) from the other side of town know about gang wars in LA? And then there's me: a white guy from the suburbs in Ohio who was raised by a gun collector who is still pretty open about his use of the"N" word. When I hear about gang violence: I just shrug: "It's probably a fight over something stupid." Still, this film remained in my queue and wasn't working its way up very quickly.

I elevated this movie to #1 when Michael Vick was signed by the Eagles. In one week: I heard two accounts from completely different lifestyles: Prissy ESPN sports talk show host Mike Greenberg declared that he had never heard of the subculture known as dog fighting until the Vick case made the news. Vick stated that dog fighting in his childhood neighborhood was so common that police would stop to see a fight and then drive away. Dog fighting was the norm. It was then when I knew I had to check out Peralta's newest movie as I'd loved the Dog Town and Z Boys documentary.

The first 25-30 minutes of the movie covers pre-1970 race riots in LA and other cities. How invisible lines created "hoods" by police who would commonly question straying pedestrians about "why don't you go back to your neighborhood?" Then abruptly, the movie takes a sharp turn when vocal black leaders like MLK, Malcom X and others are thrown in jail or murdered. Suddenly, all the icons were gone. Think of the Living Colour song: Cult of Personality - "When that leader speaks, that leader dies."

For the rest of the movie I was hooked. I couldn't grasp what was happening. The Crips and Bloods seemed to come out of nowhere. Peralta seemed to have skipped something important. But he didn't.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Professor Brizz on May 13, 2009
Format: DVD
Simply some of the most powerful footage and commentary on race in America I've ever seen. Powerful Powerful stuff. Something every American should sit down and pay very close attention to. The section on the Watts Riots gave me chills....just incredibly well done. The explication of the economic foundation of LA's ghettoization is succinct and 100% on target. The way the film traces the roots of today's problems so clearly to Slavery, Jim Crow, and the marginalization of the American black in the most prosperous period after WWII is pitch perfect. It's hard to comprehend how someone can grow up in LA and never have seen the Pacific Ocean...but that insular world of crips and bloods is an epidemic America is going to have to confront sooner or later.

Buy this dvd and watch this film...
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By ViAmber on March 26, 2009
Format: DVD
I just saw this movie last night and will be returning again to see it. It was very powerful, much more so than I would have ever imagined.

The film traces back through history, detailing the "roots of rage", so to speak, for the black man in Los Angeles. The film is never boring, utilizing archival film clips from the past, interspersed with interviews from past gang members who are incredibly articulate and erudite. Kumasi's barely controlled ire is tempered with measured intelligent speech. I was enthralled.

The only surprise for me was the lack of mention of the influence of rap music vis a vis the gangs, although there is plenty to be had on the soundtrack throughout.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By yaldabaoth on December 21, 2010
Format: DVD
The documentary lays down the socio-political context that defines much of the contemporary African-American experience in the US of A. Broken families, bad schools, no jobs, rampant violence that often has no visible cause. A society in disintegration where joining a "gang" means joining a family. It is clear to even the casual viewer that building more prisons is not going to solve the problems faced by those communities. Nor will giving more tax breaks and unearned bonuses to vampire squids.

The film is based on interviews with current and former gang members, and a few dedicated and caring activists who see the kids in gangs as human beings who have an inalienable right to a decent, safe and happy life. What struck me was the eloquence of the interviewees as well as the raw pain speaking - the pain of loss, the pain of the child, the pain of the outsider. Pain that needs to be kept under the tough guy facade 'because only the strong survive'. The beauty and heart-shattering grief of women experiencing the loss of their kids, nephews and grandchildren. The raw, human power that is squandered by keeping those young people ghettoed in.

I'd be interested in seeing how the reviewers croaking about "personal responsibility" on these pages felt if they were harassed by the police every time they crossed a certain street (into a neighborhood where they were not 'supposed' to be). If they had been kept away from progress, growth, respect, education, equal opportunity by the lack of access and institutionalized neglect. I find it amazing that the film does not make you sad or make you want to help, but rather compels you to display your own disconnectedness and lack of humaneness.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Frank H. Curtis on April 25, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
When Dog Town Z Boys came out, I took my , then , preteen son to see the movie and to my amazement this was about Bay Street, Jeff Ho and Skip and the young guys that hung out at Jeff Ho's Surfboard Shop.I surfed Bay Street with those guys .Now, years later the film maker comes out with a film that includes an unknown ,outside of South Central L.A., Bird of the Slausons who I went to Jacob A. Riis High School with in the late 50's and early 60's. These films represent two extremely different periods of my life and would never have any connection except this Film maker made both films.I can't really explain who Bird was to me except to say that most White Kids at that time probably had John Wayne and maybe a few, James Dean as their hero.The few White kids that were sent to Riis usually only lasted one day, I stayed for three years and had one of my best experiences in life and education, not traditional education. The real story of that period , before the Crips and Bloods ,when the Slausons, Huns , Midget Florencia,Quarter Gang and more , did more punching then shooting, before the Watts rebellion where those neighborhoods were not much different then the deep south as far as racism, police brutality and semi economic slavery was concern, is briefly touched on in this film. Bird does not look like Bird anymore then I look like I did in my teens and maybe there are not enough alive or on the streets that could truly define that period of time. I thank the Film Maker for bringing back memories of those days and the amazing Bird, Ernest Williams, of the Slausons.
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