Evolution of a Criminal

Watch Evolution of a Criminal

"How does a 16 year-old evolve into a bank robber?"
  • NR
  • 2014
  • 1 hr 24 min
  • 6.9  (301)
  • 76

Evolution of a Criminal is a documentary-style drama film that traces the transformation of a young man from a straight-A student to a convicted criminal. Directed by Darius Clark Monroe, who himself has a personal connection to the story, this film explores the factors that contributed to the protagonist's descent into criminal behavior.

The story begins in the mid-1990s in Houston, Texas, where 16-year-old Darius Clark Monroe attended a high school that was predominantly African American. Darius was an accomplished student and an aspiring filmmaker, whose passion for storytelling was nurtured by his creative writing teacher, Mrs. Gooden. Despite having a loving family and a supportive community, Darius found himself struggling to fit in and to live up to the expectations of his peers.

One fateful day, Darius and two of his friends decided to rob a bank. Though he initially hesitated to participate, Darius ultimately went along with the plan, convinced that this was the only way to escape his troubles. The robbery turned violent when one of the robbers shot a bank teller, leaving her severely injured. Darius and his accomplices were apprehended and sentenced to lengthy prison terms.

The film uses a mix of archival footage, reenactments, and personal interviews to tell Darius's story. What makes this film particularly compelling is the filmmaker's willingness to confront his own troubled past and to reflect on his actions. Monroe returned to his hometown of Houston to reconnect with his family, his former classmates, and some of the people who were involved in the robbery. He also sought out the injured teller, whom he had never met before, to apologize and to attempt to make amends.

Throughout the film, Monroe grapples with the consequences of his criminal behavior and attempts to understand the factors that led him down this path. He reflects on the pressures he faced to conform to masculine ideals of toughness and on the allure of fast money. He also confronts the racial and class disparities that shaped his experiences, particularly as a black teenager living in a low-income neighborhood.

The film raises important questions about the American criminal justice system and the ways in which it perpetuates cycles of poverty and violence. It exposes the harsh realities of life behind bars, where inmates are subjected to overcrowding, violence, and dehumanization. It also highlights the challenges faced by ex-convicts who are released back into society, where they face discrimination, marginalization, and a lack of support.

Evolution of a Criminal is a thought-provoking and emotional film that invites viewers to question their assumptions about crime, punishment, and redemption. It offers a powerful testimony to the resilience of the human spirit and to the power of forgiveness and reconciliation. It is a must-see for anyone interested in issues of social justice, racial inequality, and the complexities of the human experience.

Evolution of a Criminal is a 2014 documentary with a runtime of 1 hour and 24 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.9 and a MetaScore of 76.

Where to Watch Evolution of a Criminal
Evolution of a Criminal is available to watch free on Plex, Pluto TV and Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at The Roku Channel, Apple TV, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Evolution of a Criminal for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 24 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.9  (301)
  • Metascore