The Body Politic

In a city overwhelmed by violence, the only thing worth fighting for is peace.

Like many areas in the United States, the City of Baltimore has been plagued by gun violence. Amid the George Floyd uprising, Brandon Scott, a young, black, reform-minded leader, is elected mayor. He grew up here during the city’s most troubling years and has lost friends to gun crime. He hopes to lower violence rates with a new more supportive approach. While previous administrations relied on policing and incarceration, Scott stresses the need for prevention and offering alternatives. He wants to give people hope.

But after entering office and barely getting a chance to enact his first safety reforms, violence surges to new highs. As the media and political foes attack his ‘woke’ policies, his commitment to his principles put his political future in jeopardy. For months, the Governor of Maryland, who controls access to State funding, refuses to even meet with him.

With unfettered access, cameras follow him and his team of young leaders throughout their first year in city hall. Will his holistic approach lead to healing and serve as a blueprint for the rest of the nation?


  • Year: 2023
  • Duration: 90, 82 & 52 mins
  • Production: Rowhouse, LC
  • Director: Gabriel Francis Paz Goodenough
  • Available Versions: ENG
  • Country of production: USA


  • Voted Top 10 Audience Favourite at Sheffield DocFest 2023 (UK) - Spotlight Film at DC/DOX Film Festival 2023 (USA) - Chairperson’s Award for Feature Documentary at Zanzibar International Film Festival 2023 (Tanzania) - New/Next Film Festival 2023 (USA) - Audience Choice Award Winner Feature Documentary at Heartland International Film Festival 2023 (USA) - St. Louis International Film Festival 2023 (USA) - Runner Up Audience Award Winner Feature Documentary at Anchorage International Film Festival 2023 (USA) - Big Sky Documentary Film Festival 2024 (USA) - University of Wisconsin-Madison Havens Wright Social Cinema Series 2024 (USA) - Audience Choice Award Winner Documentary Film at Omaha Film Festival 2024 (USA) - Salem Film Fest 2024 (USA) - The Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival 2024 (USA) - One World International Film Festival 2024 (Czech Republic) - Movies That Matter Film Festival 2024 (Netherlands) - ACT Human Rights Film Festival 2024 (USA) - Milwaukee Film Festival 2024 (USA) - Capital City Film Festival 2024 (USA) - Atlanta Film Festival 2024 (USA) - DocLands Documentary Film Festival 2024 (USA).