Experiencing Interruptions?

A Block From Home

Brandon Ragnot, a 13-year-old Brooklyn honors student is shot in the head on the day he graduated with honor from middle school. A Block From Home explores the remarkable and sometimes painful journey of Brandon’s shooting and subsequent recovery. The story is told through intimate interviews of Brandon, his friends and family as they take us through his childhood to that fateful day where senseless violence forever changed his life.

The film starts with a brief recount of Brandon as a child. His mother talks of a quiet, but very active boy as we see pictures of young Brandon exploring his world. His father, Aunt and Godmother chime in to paint the picture of the happy middle school graduate, ready to go off to high school. All seems right until Brandon does not return from a game of handball, one of his favorite pastimes. His family and friends take us through that fateful night. They tell us where they were when he was shot and how they find out as the sequence of events unfold and their worst fears are realized. Their son, nephew and friend has been shot in the head and is lying in the hospital in a coma.

News footage is mixed in as the police search in vain for the shooter and gun. The expectation for Brandon’s recovery does not look good. His family stays close by him. They pray and after several weeks Brandon does wake up. His father talks about being in the room and seeing him wake up. He tells us, he just cries. Brandon asks what happened and soon realizes he has been shot.

Though the expectations are low for Brandon, he works hard in physical and occupational therapy and he is soon walking. His therapist takes us through his highly successful rehabilitation process. His next hurdle is schooling. He is home schooled for a year and the New York City Department of Education recommend that he be put into Special Education classes at a school by his home.

Brandon’s determination and his parents’ persistence pays off. He is allowed to go to John Dewey High School to study computer science. His friends from middle school who also attend Dewey talk about the incident and seeing their friend again. One friend states that “it really affected me that somebody I know could get shot and the shooter could just get away… I was really happy to see him… he was still the same really cool person I knew.”

Brandon’s teachers share about his success in high school as he approaches graduation. He will soon graduate on time with his friends and move on to college. This film encompasses bravery, persistence, hard work and the love of all who believe in him.

  • Brandon Ragnot
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Runtime:
    15 minutes 56 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 13, 2011
  • Production Budget:
    0 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Tribeca Film Institute Our City, My Story
    New York, NY
  • Onecloudfest Film Festival
  • Tallgrass Film Festival
    Wichita, Kansas
  • Utopia Film Festival
    Greenbelt, Maryland
  • Independents Film Festival
    Tampa, Florida
  • Sunscreen Film Festival
    St. Petersburg, Florida
  • The Indie Gathering
    Cleveland, Ohio
Director - Brandon Ragnot