MERKSPLAS, BELGIUM - March 2020. Corona shuts down Belgium. Everyone has to stay inside. Door closed, one hour a day outside. A story that sounds familiar to the residents of Merksplas prison.
Locked up in lockdown' is a portrait of three prisoners, who experience the coronacrisis in a completely different way than the rest of the world. They are no longer allowed to receive visitors, most of the activities are cancelled, but they can still make phone calls. From a grey prison office, they are given one hour each week for an interview on the phone.
The Flemish prison radio project Radio Begijnenstraat made during this period a dial-in radio show with three generations of internees. They are experts in isolation. And while prison time is ticking even slower than usual, Yani, Manuel and Werner tell how they experience this lockdown.
This documentary is not only a portrait of lost zest for life and death dreams of three generations of interned men, but also a testimony of an inadequate internment policy, in which there is still a lack of proper care for mentally ill offenders.
- Locked-up in lockdown, Apache.be, 10/08/2020. (in Dutch)