Documentary on the Friedmans, a seemingly typical, upper-middle-class Jewish family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his youngest son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes.
Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker, Jean-Xavier de Lestrade, presents a gripping courtroom thriller, offering a rare and revealing inside look at a high-profile murder trial. In ... See full summary »
The accident made national headlines: a suburban mother drove the wrong way on the Taconic Parkway in upstate New York and crashed head-on into an SUV, killing herself and seven others. In ... See full summary »
A documentary that examines the 1989 case of five black and Latino teenagers who were convicted of raping a white woman in Central Park. After having spent between 6 and 13 years each in prison, a serial rapist confessed to the crime.
In the quiet suburb of Cheshire, Connecticut, Jennifer Petit and her two young daughters were killed in a horrific home invasion; husband and father William Petit was the only one who ... See full summary »
Berlinger and Sinofsky's documentary of a gruesome triple murder in West Memphis, Arkansas and the subsequent trials of three suspects, takes a hard look at both the occult and the American justice system in 'small-town' America. Three teenagers are accused of this horrific crime of killing three children, supposedly as a result of involvement in Satanism. As in their previous documentary, things turn out to be more complex than initial appearances and this film presents the real-life courtroom drama to the viewer, as it unfolds. Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
In August 2011, after eighteen years in prison, Jason Baldwin, Damien Echols, and Jessie Misskelley (known as "The West Memphis Three") entered an "Alford" plea (which allows them to maintain their innocence while simultaneously acknowledging that the state likely has enough evidence to convict them). They were given credit for the time they had already served and freed instantly. Echols said that if not for the films made about the case by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky, the Arkansas justice system "would have murdered me, swept this under the rug, and I wouldn't be anything but a memory right now." See more »
Damien reads this Shakespearean quote while on trial: "Life's but a walking shadow...full of sound and fury signifying nothing." He incorrectly refers to it as being from A Midsummer Night's Dream. It is fact a soliloquy famously from Macbeth. See more »
Damien Wayne Echols:
I knew from when I was real small people were gonna know who I was, I always had that feeling... I just never knew how they were gonna learn. I kind of enjoy it now because even after I die, people are gonna remember me forever. People are gonna talk about me for years. People in West Memphis will tell their kids stories... It'll be sorta like I'm the West Memphis boogie man. Little kids will be looking under their beds - "Damien might be under there!"
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Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (1996)
I always believed that a case needed only reasonable doubt to find people innocent. Apparently I was very wrong. I am in no way claiming my support for the three found guilty, but I for one could never convict them based on this evidence. The film shows just how unstable people can be when faced with those that don't conform. I was amazed by how much I disliked the parents of the murdered boys. They ramble and scream about killing these three, already convinced of their guilt. They seem more unstable and threatening to me, and not just because their children have been murdered. No real physical evidence is brought up against the boys, whom should probably start training professional killers on how not to leave evidence at a murder site. I know for a fact that a lot of details were left out of this documentary, and the celebrity worship that has followed the accused since is a bit too much. However this film is terrifying. It shows that just because of the way you look, and what people say about you, can take away your entire life. Make sure to check out all the evidence for yourself.
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