Running Time: 83 minutes
Omar was just weeks away from the end of a 10-year prison sentence for armed robbery when Oscar-nominated filmmaker Tod Lending began filming him. At the time, Omar had been drug-free for eight years and was participating in a new prison release program which promised its participants a wide array of resources ranging from drug treatment and career counseling to transitional housing and a two-year commitment from case managers.
Pete had been out of prison for 10 months and was doing well. Through the same reentry program, he manages a transitional house and holds a job counseling others at a mental health clinic. On the day of Omar’s release, the two rekindle their long-term friendship and become roommates at the transitional house. Both men had been in and out of prison for three decades, never out for more than a year.
OMAR & PETE captures events as they unfold in cinema verité style; the stories are told through events and behavior. Only people who are organic to the story and environment are part of the film.
This honest and unflinching portrait shows how challenging life on the outside can be for men who’ve lived much of their lives behind bars. It is a story of what can happen when support is offered – and accepted. And it reveals that, no matter how much support is given, pride, pain, fear and the disease of addiction are the demons that every man must face within himself.
Includes Facilitator’s Discussion Guide