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Bianca, Treena, Laura, and Caitlin are a stark reflection of the troubling worldwide tendency to criminalize and imprison the most vulnerable in society—those most affected by poverty, addiction, childhood trauma, and mental illness. Together with long-time prisoners’ rights advocate Kim Pate and others, these women collaborate with the filmmakers to answer a deceptively simple question: What would you have needed to avoid incarceration? Through art, photography, filmmaking and poetry, the women inside envision a more ideal world on the outside. Their creative agency emerges as a force that empowers them to chart the course of their own lives, and they become increasingly engaged in making Conviction—not another ‘broken prison’ film, but rather a ‘broken society’ film. Conviction takes us on a raw and cinematic journey, while making the impassioned argument that we would do better to create communities that heal and support our most vulnerable, rather than punish them further.

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Main credits

Ackerman, Nancy (film director)
Ackerman, Nancy (screenwriter)
Ackerman, Nancy (director of photography)
Ackerman, Nancy (editor of moving image work)
Pahlke, Ariella (film director)
Pahlke, Ariella (screenwriter)
MacInnes, Teresa (film director)
MacInnes, Teresa (screenwriter)
MacInnes, Teresa (film producer)
MacInnes, Teresa (editor of moving image work)
Clarke, Annette (film producer)

Other credits

Director of photography, Nance Ackerman; edited by Nance Ackerman & Teresa MacInnes; original music by Judith Gruber-Stitzer.

Docuseek subjects

Distributor subjects

Crime and Criminals
Law and Legal Studies
Social Issues
Gender Issues and Studies


Women prisoners,Imprisonment,Women's detention institutions,Personal experiences; "Conviction"; Natl Film Board of Canada

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