A Film by ACADEMY AWARD Winner Freida Lee Mock
G-DOG is about second chances – about a charismatic visionary who launched the largest, most successful gang intervention and rehab program in the country.
The film tells the entertaining, hilarious and unlikely story of how a white Jesuit priest became an expert in gang lives. Called G-Dog by his homies – his name is Father Greg Boyle – and he works by a powerful idea: “Nothing Stops a Bullet like a Job.” G-Dog’s unstoppable compassion has transformed the lives of thousands of Latino, Asian, and African American gang members.
His Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles, with a 70% success rate at redirecting kids away from gang life, is global in influence – Manchester, Toronto, Hamburg, Rio and more. It provides tattoo removal, job training, counseling, yoga, fatherhood and substance abuse classes – all free. It’s the one place in the ‘hood that turns lives around: swapping violence for community and building toward a future of hope.
Why did we choose it for the New Urbanism Film Festival?
Welcome to Los Angeles. People know this metropolis for its sprawl, but it has another infamous urban problem: gangs. L.A. is notorious for its crime, gang activity, and rocky race relations.
Urbanism, with its lock down projects, isolated towers, and brutalism architecture tried to control the environment. But you cannot do it. “You cannot arrest your way out of gang violence.”
Father Greg Boyle had a different plan. As a priest newly assigned to East LA, he walked out of the church and into his neighborhood to take a look. People thought he was crazy. Before he was G-DOG, the neighborhood knew him as the priest on a bicycle.
He saw a lack of community and a lack of hope. He saw a need for jobs. So he created a jobs training program for his community. The program developed into several small businesses (bakery, café, catering, silk screen printing). These local businesses gave the community hope.
And it all started when a priest decided to go for a walk in the city.