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In director Patric Jean’s film, residents of French suburban slums (banlieue) tell their stories of exclusion and discrimination by employers and the legal and prison systems which prevent them from participating in French society and ‘normal’ life. As they see it, they are paralyzed by marginalization, while the rest of society enjoys economic prosperity and consumerism. It is a downward spiral with no way out; the documentary exposes their plight and illustrates the ways in which government and society maintain these circumstances.