SEEING I S BELIEVING
IT was one of the most high-profile, highly charged court cases in New York legal history, later exposed as one of the greatest miscarriages of justice – with none other than Donald Trump playing his part to fan the flames of racial bias. Thirty years on, there’s no less tension in this brilliant dramatisation of the case of the Central Park Five, wrongly accused and set up by NYPD for the assault and rape of a female jogger in 1989. Over four extraordinary episodes, the true story is retold, triggering all the heartbreak and fury the young African American men and their families would have experienced as they battled a corrupt justice system. Taking advantage of the hysteria, Trump paid $85,000 to take out full-page ads calling for the death penalty to be brought back, going on TV to declare his “hate” for the boys. Despite knowing they were eventually exonerated, I found this devastating to watch and note little seems to have changed when it comes to the scales of justice in America. Director Ava DuVernay (pictured with Caleel Harris) has delivered yet another damning essay on racial inequality; while the five young actors declare their extraordinary talent to the world in this. Oprah Winfrey, who helped produce the drama, also filmed a show with the cast and real Central Park Five, which acts as both a fascinating follow-up and group therapy for a traumatised audience.