30 Seconds Away: Breaking the Cycle

8.51 h 14 min201513+
A former federal agent takes you from Milwaukee's streets into its justice system, following Harold Sloan and fellow homeless men over five years as they struggle to survive.
Faith Kohler
Harold SloanGeneral MacArthurDerek Mosley
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Chad StilesAnthony LeinoTodd Kyrola
Jessica FarrellFaith Kohler
Cow Lamp Films
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4.5 out of 5 stars

23 global ratings

  1. 64% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 21% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 15% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 0% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 0% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

AnonymousReviewed in the United States on June 26, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Unflinching and Compassionate
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As other reviewers have stated, this documentary treats everyone with compassion and respect--the gentlemen who are homeless, the officers trying their best to help with what resources they have, non-profit workers, attorneys and judges. It makes me truly proud to live in Milwaukee--and proud of our police. There are a lot of bad things going on, but those often overshadow the good, and I really appreciated this filmmaker's holding up a mirror to unflinchingly reflect both the darkness and the light--and taking pains to show that the police are not all bad.

The only thing that I really wish they'd addressed are issues around people panhandling who will turn down food or other assistance offered by passersby. The other elephant in the room is the fact that some people panhandle without actually being in need of the money, or being in need but consciously choosing to manipulate others; research has been done that shows a large segment of the panhandling population are intentional vagrants who move from town to town and are often guilty of committing violent crimes. I'd be very curious to hear how the gentlemen of Milwaukee feel about this, and what they'd want the public to know before giving someone change.

I also wish they'd interviewed more than one judge and perhaps some of the folks who run The Guest House or other missions / shelters.

Still--all-in-all--generally well-rounded, and definitely a compassionate look at the people whom most folks tend to not want to see.
Adam TaubReviewed in the United States on January 9, 2022
5.0 out of 5 stars
Impacting and Thought Provoking
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Take the time to watch this documentary. Includes insightful and emotional interviews with a variety of people, from those living on the streets, others that once were homeless, law enforcement, advocates, a judge and others. Very though provoking and it comes across that those making the film has a heart for those in the film and also a deep understanding of homelessness in Milwaukee.
John PReviewed in the United States on September 21, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Remarkable documentary
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Wow... what a remarkable documentary. This film showed many facets of homelessness, including mental illness, the court system and how the Homeless Taskforce is trying to help. It’s important to see this film to realize there is a “human side of homelessness”.
In order to paint a compete picture of homelessness, Attorney Kohler offered pertinent commentary about the stark reality of our court system and how our society has become.
Daniel E SchleyReviewed in the United States on December 14, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
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This movie is remarkable. The filmmaker discussed the issues deeply, never forgetting that all people deserve to be treated with dignity. There was no "holier than thou" preachiness that often comes with discussion of homelessness. I really liked how ever person in the movie, no matter there role (police, judge, lawyer, social worker, or person without housing) was referred to with only first names. This makes the conversation equal and level. I only wish there was some conversation and connection with homeless women and families. Thank you so much for making this important film.
3 people found this helpful
NemoReviewed in the United States on January 30, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
This movie renewed my hope for a new America
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I want to move to Minnesota! Finally I find some good news about the police, They are doing some good for the homeless. Thank you Jesus! I hope it spreads all over the world. I was beginning to think we were doomed.
2 people found this helpful
Carla DeanReviewed in the United States on February 1, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
A picture of love and hope.
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Finally a fresh look at the homeless people from a perspective of finding hope and help instead of harm. Praise God we need to all see that all of us need each other and we are all our brothers keepers. Amen.
One person found this helpful
MickReviewed in the United States on February 26, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
We are here!
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As a once homeless veteran, I now live in subsidised housing provided by VA if it weren't for programs like this, myself and many others would be dead, in in jail or wishing we were.
nathan levineReviewed in the United States on December 31, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Powerful and well balanced
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This documentary takes away the stigma of being homeless and the officers interacting with the homeless population. A view into a hidden world that we as a society choose to hide from.
2 people found this helpful
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