On April 2010, the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded, killing 11 people and spewing almost five million barrels of oil into the Gulf. Crude Justice explores the damage done by this environmental calamity to the lives and livelihoods of the people who depend on the waters of the Gulf of Mexico for their income, their food, and the continuation of their culture, and the legal dilemmas they now face. Shot on location in Louisiana, the 17-minute video project looks at the difficulties of ordinary people seeking fair compensation and a secure future for their families in the face of corporate domination of the courts, statutes favoring big business, judges with ties to the oil and gas industries, and the uncertainties that accompany an incident where the long-term effects may not be known for years. The film is narrated by actor and environmentalist Ed Begley, Jr. and features interviews with environmental law experts and local leaders in the Gulf fishing community. Interviewees discuss the legal challenges facing victims of the spill, thousands of whom are seeking compensation and accountability from BP. Crude Justice tells the story of damaged lives, but also of the fighting spirit and resilience of people who understand that what is threatened is not just justice for the victims of the spill, but the integrity of the American judicial system itself.
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