Directed by Nina Rosenblum, Jon Alpert • Documentary • 1994 • 75 minutes
If you’re arrested in New York City and can’t make bail, you’ll be sent to Rikers Island—a mammoth holding facility for 17,000 men and women awaiting trial. Jon Alpert spent ten months filming there, coming away with a graphic and unblinking documentary portrait of life inside America’s largest prison complex, including a moving look at the human faces behind the statistics. This documentary, along with Jon Alpert’s ONE YEAR IN A LIFE OF CRIME, inspired the Safdie brothers’ crime drama, GOOD TIME. LOCK UP: THE PRISONERS OF RIKERS ISLAND is a DCTV / HBO production, directed by Jon Alpert and Nina Rosenblum.