Since the beginning of the War on Drugs, the number of women in U.S. prisons has grown over 800%. The majority are mothers. 

In a Midwestern state caught between harsh drug sentencing and rising incarceration for women, three unforgettable mothers return home from prison and try to rebuild their lives after being separated from their children for years. 

Lydia, a devoted ‘soccer mom’, fell into opiate addiction after being prescribed painkillers by her doctor, and her family are shellshocked by her incarceration. Amanda’s son was three when she was imprisoned. Since then has only seen him every few months, and dreams of setting up a home with him when she gets out. But it isn’t easy to find a family home after being incarcerated. And Tomika was sent to jail when her daughter Bailee was just nine months old. On her release nine years later, she tries to rebuild a relationship with Bailee while working multiple jobs to make ends meet.

Their stories overlap at a new reentry program for women, run by Malika, an advocate formerly incarcerated in the same prison. Filmed over three and a half years, ‘Apart’traces their steps as they reconstruct lives derailed by drugs and prison. It’s the story of separation, loss and survival. But it’s also a story of women helping each other return to their communities—a story of love and reunion.


  • Year: 2021
  • Duration: 85 & 52 mins
  • Production: Red Antelope Films
  • Director: Jennifer Redfearn
  • Available Versions: ENG
  • Country of production: USA


  • Media for a Just Society Award Winner 2022 in the Film Category (USA), Best Directing at What If ? The Women In Film Festival 2022 (Switzerland), HotDocs (Canada), Full Frame (USA), Human Rights Watch Film Festival NYC (USA), Cleveland International Film Festival (USA), Mountainfilm (USA), Rocky Mountain Women’s Film Festival (USA), Morehouse College Human Rights Film Festival (USA), Dig Awards (Italy), One World Slovakia (Slovakia), Global Health Film Festival (UK), Short-listed in the final round of the 20th GZDOC Golden Kapok Competition at Guangzhou International Documentary Film Festival 2023 (China)

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