The Pushouts

Filmmakers: Katie Galloway, Dawn Valadez (Co-Director)

Runtime: 56 min

I WAS IN PRISON BEFORE I WAS EVEN BORN. So begins the story of Dr. Victor Rios who, by 15, was a high school dropout and gang member with three felony convictions and a death wish. But when a teacher’s quiet persistence, a mentor’s moral conviction, and his best friend’s murder converge, Rios’s path takes an unexpected turn. Through Rios’s personal lens and its interplay with the stories of the youth of Yo!Watts, THE PUSHOUTS interrogates crucial questions of race, class, and power – and the promise and perils of education – at a particularly urgent time.

About The Filmmakers

Galloway’s films explore the intersections of institutional power, civil & human rights, and political activism — with a particular focus on the American justice system. In addition to THE RETURN, her recent work includes the critically acclaimed feature documentary EL POETA (PBS VOCES, 2015) – an examination of the international drug war through the eyes of Mexican poet turned international protest leader Javier Sicilia; ERIC & ANNA, a post-911 love story featuring a teen FBI informant and a question of entrapment (The Interept/Field of Vision, 2015); A RIDE HOME FROM PRISON, a brief meditation on what it means to “reenter” life outside prison after decades behind bars (NYT Op-Docs, 2015) and several short format series.

Dawn Valadez is a filmmaker, activist, resource wrangler, and impact strategist. Her award-winning feature documentary, GOING ON 13 (with Kristy Guevara-Flanagan) premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and follows the stories of four preteen girls of color as they grow up and become young women. Dawn is two feature documentaries – THE PUSHOUTS (2018) AND currently producing TEACHER LIKE ME (in production) – which are thematically related to each other and to her first feature documentary.