Critical Condition: Free Meek

Free Meek | Amazon Prime Video, from Friday

☆☆☆Meek Mill won’t know until later this month if he’ll be retried for a 2007 gun and drug conviction, but Amazon Prime Video’s five-part Free Meek documentary launching August 9 leaves no doubt the deck was stacked against him then and now. Featuring interviews with the likes of Jay-Z, who is an executive producer, the clearly biased up-close-and-personal limited series unveils the rapper’s nightmare journey through the criminal justice system the past decade – and it’s hard to look away at the clear injustice he suffered and could suffer again.” — Deadline.

☆☆☆☆ Free Meek is a gripping look at Meek Mill’s Kafkaesque journey through the criminal justice system … Inextricable from the plagues of racism, poverty and mass incarceration, the relationship between hip-hop and crime has always been fraught. Yet Meek’s case is more reminiscent of Kafka’s The Trial than the legal woes of contemporaries like Kodak Black and Tekashi 6ix9ine. The still-ongoing ordeal has transformed him into an activist for criminal justice reform.” — Time.

☆☆☆ “The Amazon series is at its strongest when it attempts to uncover what really happened in the original incident in January 2007 on the 2400 block of S. Hemberger Street in South Philly, when Mill either did or didn’t pull a gun on a team of police who were set to make a drug raid on a house where he was living with his cousins … Free Meek makes a convincing case that Mill’s trials and tribulations have matured the rapper and made him a more thoughtful man, one who’s been through the kind of hellish experience that many of his cohorts rap about without having actually lived.” — The Philadelphia Inquirer.

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