Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992

Not wasting a minute of its two-and-a-half-hour running time, this remarkable documentary echoes O.J: Made in America by examining the Los Angeles riots through multiple perspectives to establish context for the events that unfolded. Racial tensions in the South Central neighborhood reached a boiling point in April and May 1992, but by focusing on the decade that preceded the uprising, the film compels one to believe that certain factors made matters worse: the Los Angeles Police Department’s treatment of local African-Americans, growing distrust and resentment between African-Americans and Korean-Americans, and the confluent and widespread presence of crack cocaine and gang violence. The director is John Ridley, who wrote the Oscar-winning adaptation of 12 Years a Slave, and he wisely prioritizes the firsthand accounts of his interview subjects.