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65 Ratings

Let the Fire Burn

Directed by Jason Osder
United States, 2013


Jason Osder makes his impressive feature film debut with this unbiased and thorough account of the incidents leading up to and during the 1985 standoff between the extremist African-American organization MOVE and Philadelphia authorities….

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Let the Fire Burn Directed by Jason Osder

Awards & Festivals

Independent Spirit Awards

2014 | Winner: Truer Than Fiction Award

Village Voice Film Poll

2013 | 2 nominations including: Best Documentary Feature Film

Indiewire Critics' Poll

2013 | Nominee: Best Documentary

Jason Osder’s documentary Let the Fire Burn, also screening as part of New Voices in Black Cinema, takes us right into the belly of the beast, sparing no indignity, allowing no one the assurance of moral sanctity or outright victimhood as it tells this story.
March 30, 2014
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The film finds its structural skeleton in the testimony and cross-examination of an independent special commission investigating post-fire. The result is a fragile dance between past and present, a master class in editorial nimbleness. Let the Fire Burn is an exceptional piece of nonfiction because it doesn’t judge one side more harshly than the other.
October 30, 2013
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MOVE was anti-technology, and so aside from a few brief films shot by outsiders sympathetic to the group, they were “framed” by the media complex of the dominant culture they struggled so hard to resist. By highlighting this, Osder has made a more difficult film — one that implicitly critiques virtually every other act of contemporary documentation.
October 24, 2013
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