5.6/10
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8 user 2 critic

The Thin Blue Lie (2000)

A spine-chilling thriller about a courageous young reporter who risks his life and career to go deep into police abuse within homicide.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Kate Johnson
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K.C.
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Art Zugler
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Detective Marshall
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Detective King
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Vinnie
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Deep Nightstick
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Bruce McFee ...
Detective Harris
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Detective Regossi
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John Reilly
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Sharon Chadway
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Storyline

A new reporter is brought to a Philadelphia newspaper to provide court coverage in this 70's era fact-based story. One of the first cases brought to his attention involves a mentally handicapped young man who was found guilty of murder. His attorney, however, contends that his client was railroaded by the police and beaten into a confession. Investigation into the allegations reveals that not only has the client been beaten, but the witnesses were also beaten to force their testimony to collaborate the police's findings. Further investigations reveal a history of police abuse in many cases involving minorities and the under-privileged. Bringing his findings to his editors and a senior reporter, he is green-lighted to pursue the story further. He quickly finds that his story will not be easily founded as he receives threats at the hands of street police and detectives. Eventually he finds that the case leads to Mayor Frank Rizzo's office. He also finds that many don't support his ... Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

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Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

13 August 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Goon Squad  »

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1.33 : 1
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Connections

References The Thin Red Line (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Phony hero/writer of The Thin Blue Lie
3 February 2012 | by See all my reviews

It's unfortunate that the story's author found it expedient to write that his hero-reporter began exposing police torture and framing of innocent people by solving the racially motivated arson murder of a Hispanic family in Philadelphia. The true facts of that case, which was actually solved by ATF special agents, are detailed at length in a book titled "Very Special Agents" by James Moore (Pocket Books, 1997; reprinted by the University of Illinois Press, 2001).Reporter Jonathan Neumann did write about this case for Philadelphia newspapers but all of his facts came from ATF reports and the trial of homicide detectives convicted of framing the man they accused of the crime in order to please their superiors and protect a local politician. As a result of the ATF investigation, the victim whom detectives framed was freed and the detectives were sentenced to Federal prison for terms exactly matching the years their victim had served. So much for Helfgott's story "based on true facts." It'd also be noice if, amidst all his awards, reporter Jonathan Neumann had the integrity to correct this phony aspect of the story. Oh well, maybe journalistic integrity is elastic, like that of the detectives in this film.


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