This extraordinary documentary on Saigu, (better known as the LA Riots), put together by Santa Monica College students and Dr. Sang Chi in the history
department begins by discussing the issue of perspective. Think about this issue throughout the film as you watch it. How is perspective itself part of the
story of the civil unrest that took place in South Central Los Angeles in April and May 1992, following the not-guilty verdict of the four white police officers
who were caught on camera beating Rodney King?
After watching the documentary and reading over some of the coverage from the LA Times and the LA Sentinel newspapers, write a film review that
addresses the following questions:
What do you think the aim of this documentary is? Why did its producers and contributors want to tell the story in this way? Who or what narrative(s) is/are
being challenged? (This should be your thesis and answered in the opening paragraph).
What historical factors led to the growing tensions between the Korean and African-American communities in South Central Los Angeles in the decades
before Saigu. What events led directly to Saigu BEYOND the immediate catalyst of the not-guilty verdict cited overwhelmingly as the main cause of the riots?
What role does “the media” (local, ethnic, national, and international) play in this story? What critique(s) does the film offer on this subject?
What role does “the government” (city, state, and federal) play in this story? What critique(s) does the film offer on this subject?
What do you think the producer/contributors want you to take away from this film? Does it offer a solution going forward? What are your personal thoughts
on the film’s message?