The House I Live In (2012) - Rotten Tomatoes

The House I Live In2012

The House I Live In (2012)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The House I Live In Photos

Movie Info

Why We Fight director Eugene Jarecki shifts his focus from the military industrial complex to the War on Drugs in this documentary exploring the risks that prohibition poses to freedom, and the tragedy of addicts being treated as criminals. In the four decades since the War on Drugs commenced, over 45 millions of addicts have been arrested - and for each one jailed, another family is destroyed. Meanwhile, the prisons in America are growing overcrowded with non-violent criminals, and illegal drugs are still being sold in schoolyards. By examining just where it all went wrong, Jarecki reveals that a solution is possible if we can just find it in ourselves to be compassionate, and see past the decades of paranoia and propaganda. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Watch it now


News & Interviews for The House I Live In

Critic Reviews for The House I Live In

All Critics (66) | Top Critics (27)

The movie's indictment would be more persuasive had Jarecki recognized that his audience likely already knows most of what he recaps, and can handle the odd scrap of ambiguity.

January 17, 2013 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

"The House I Live In" leaves you shaking your head in deadened wonder at the waste of it all.

December 7, 2012 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

One of the best documentaries out this year, and a must-see for Senate and Congress in America.

November 23, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
Top Critic

An angry and personal attack on America's war on drugs contends it is a grotesquely wasteful public-works scheme.

November 22, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Jarecki is a stickler for sticking to his subject, or sub-subject, until it squeals like a leech victim.

November 22, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Jarecki offers 100 small conclusions rather than one big one for you to take away.

November 22, 2012 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The House I Live In

Recently, Michael Moore, in his self-appointed role as commissioner of documentaries, gave a list of guidelines that documentary filmmakers should follow. One of them is to get in front of the camera. And with the documentary "The House I Live In," we can see where that might not always be such a good idea as in making a film about the failed drug war in the United States that affects so many poor and people of color, director Eugene Jarecki comes at it from the privileged point of view of his Connecticut family who employed a nanny for many years. So while that holds true, Jarecki does provide some keen insights here, especially as it relates to the draconian mandatory minimum sentences non-violent drug offenders face. And he benefits greatly from speaking to David Simon. But at the same time, there is a lot of material that is certainly not new(Bloom County or Bill Hicks, your choice). Plus, the documentary is now a little dated since marijuana has recently been legalized in Colorado and Washington while omitting other material like say about prohibition, which might clash with the movie's overall thesis about everything being racist and classist, ignoring the United States's long puritanical streak in favor of whatever conspiracy theories happen to come along.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

A documentary that looks at the "legacy" of the US's War On Drugs. It's undeniably fascinating subject matter but its filmed in a rather sedate, distancing manner, I wanted something more passionate and angry, more exhaustive.

Daniel Parsons
Daniel Parsons

Super Reviewer

Documentary examining some of the absurdities of the War on Drugs---like mandatory minimum sentences, the crack/cocaine sentencing disparity, and asset seizure---and how they've turned law enforcement into a self perpetuating prison-industrial complex that does nothing to address the root problems. It effectively sets forth the argument that the system is broken and that those profiting from it have no incentive to fix things, but the idea of comparing scapegoated drug-users to Holocaust victims will certainly turn some people off. The doc's biggest flaw was that it needed to be made 20 years ago, when these crazy laws were being enacted.

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer

The House I Live In Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features