We at Screen Rant tend to have a sense of humor when it comes to discussing upcoming films, sometimes injecting snarky and sharp-witted commentary on films, because we know that at the end of the day that most of these films are just passing forms of entertainment. Enter the serious documentary, of which several great (and enlightening) films have been made over the past few years: Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Food, Inc., Who Killed the Electric Car? and 2009 Oscar-winning film The Cove.

A great documentary does more than just inform you, it leaves an impression that forever affects your viewpoint on the subject matter at hand. You don’t have to agree with the documentary’s point of view to enjoy the film, either; I personally find most of Michael Moore’s documentaries to be more pomp than circumstance but the man can certainly make an engaging film.

September is Human Trafficking Awareness month in the United States and it’s a topic that we as Americans tend to brush off as an overseas problem, thanks in large part to the glorification and desensitization of the subject by recent Hollywood films and shows. Taken, Hostel, Crank and most recently the successfully rebooted Hawaii 5-0 have all addressed human trafficking but tend to make the focus more about the problem being in somebody else’s backyard and always make the saving hero an American. However, the truth is that young girls are forced into prostitution  on a daily basis at an alarming rate, everywhere.

This is the focus of the new documentary Flesh: Bought and Sold in the U.S. by independent filmmaker Kristin Ross Lauterbach, who  co-wrote the film with Christina Storm and novelist Nicole McQuaid. Watch the trailer below:

According to the movie’s website:

Slavery.  In the past.  Human trafficking.  Over there.  FLESH a shocking documentary, calls into question our definitions of slavery, human trafficking, and prostitution in the United States.  This is a story told by girls who have escaped and by those still enslaved.  It is told by former and current pimps.  It is told by the abolitionists of today, including numerous directors of non-profit organizations, a former U.S. Ambassador, LAPD vice and the L.A. City Task Force on Human Trafficking.

Cameras capture prostitutes on the streets of Los Angeles and reveal the heartbreaking reality of “The Game”. Even more compelling are the stories of these former prostitutes, who tell of the atrocious ways they were enslaved physically and psychologically.  They tell their stories of being trafficked in the U.S. and the moving stories of how they escaped.  FLESH goes behind the scenes of the third largest criminal industry that preys upon girls, whose average age of entry is twelve to fourteen.

FLESH does not end with the presentation of trafficking in the U.S. – it delves into its causes.  Why the demand for the supply of new flesh?  Why must pimps rotate their prostitutes between cities and states?  Why must new and younger girls be forced into the system?  The interviews give voice to those in the business of prostitution and to those seeking to end it.  Together they offer startling perspectives on what drives trafficking here in the U.S.

Lauterbach has made several interesting and entertaining short films that are well worth checking out and you can see them on her website HERE. Flesh marks the first time she has written and directed a full-length documentary. She has also had several successful short-length documentaries including Emthonjeni: South Africa, a profile of a settlement outside of Johannesburg, and Help Haiti Heal, which shows the devastating effects of the 2008 flooding in Haiti. She has submitted Flesh: Bought and Sold in the U.S. for this year’s Sundance Film Festival and should be warmly received.

There is no official release date for Flesh: Bought and Sold in the U.S. but you can keep an eye out on their website for more details.

Follow us on Twitter @Walwus and @ScreenRant

Source: Kristen Ross Lauterbach Official Website

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