Runtime: 88 minutes
Directed by Steve James
Rated 93% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes! Nominated for an Oscar for “Best Documentary.”
Synopsis: Abacus: Small Enough to Jail tells the incredible saga of the Chinese immigrant Sung family, owners of Abacus Federal Savings of Chinatown, New York. Accused of mortgage fraud by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., Abacus becomes the only U.S. bank to face criminal charges in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. The indictment and subsequent trial forces the Sung family to defend themselves – and their bank’s legacy in the Chinatown community–over the course of a five-year legal battle.
James spins a fascinating and complex web involving lies, fraud, a months-long trial with a hung jury, and cultural biases against Abacus and the immigrant Chinese community it serves. -Village Voice
Abacus: Small Enough to Jail is a compelling non-fiction thriller. It should engross most viewers, even those who’ve resisted learning what a subprime mortgage is. -NPR