The Camden 28 Image
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: In the early-morning hours of Sunday, August 22, 1971, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and Attorney General John Mitchell announced that FBI agents had arrested 20 antiwar activists in and near a draft board office in Camden, New Jersey. Five days later, Mitchell made public the indictment of these individuals and included eight others who were linked to the break-in. The major charges against the group were conspiracy to remove and destroy files from the draft board, FBI office, and the Army Intelligence office; destruction of government property and interfering with the Selective Service system. If convicted, some of the indicted faced up to 47 years in federal prison. The men and women arrested that summer of ’71 in Camden called themselves “America’s conscience.” The government called them the Camden 28. The surprise arrest and unorthodox trial of the Camden 28 is a story of friendship and betrayal played out against the backdrop of one of the most turbulent periods in recent American history.
    (ECC Media)
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    100
    Scene for scene, The Camden 28 is a brilliant merger of political outrage and filmmaking chops, and the most suspenseful movie in theaters right now.
  2. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    88
    Unexpectedly poignant documentary.
  3. 83
    Though the filmmaking is pedestrian, The Camden 28's timeless truths come through with resounding power.
  4. 70
    The video lapses into self-congratulation near the end, as many of the principals reunite for a 2002 retrospective, but for the most part this is a powerful tale of conscience, betrayal, and forgiveness.
  5. Reviewed by: Matthew Sorrento
    70
    Director Anthony Giacchino realizes what an engaging tale he’s uncovered, and stays back to let the members tell their story.
  6. Reviewed by: Michelle Orange
    70
    Fond, stinging, and finally instructive, the film assembles a comprehensive look back at the actions, arrest, and prosecution of a group of political malcontents (most of them young Catholics and some of them priests) in the summer of 1971.
  7. The Camden 28 is slapdash: more talking heads, reunion footage with the mother reading from her own testimony, newscasts of the day. But the editing supplies some urgency, and the subjects remain radiant yet down-to-earth--too good-humored to be beatific.

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