7.7/10
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7 user 14 critic

The Execution of Wanda Jean (2002)

The Execution of Wanda Jean chronicles the life-and-death battle of Wanda Jean Allen, the first black woman to be put to death in the United States in the modern era.

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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Wanda Jean Allen ...
Herself
...
Himself
David Presson ...
Himself
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Storyline

The Execution of Wanda Jean chronicles the life-and-death battle of Wanda Jean Allen, the first black woman to be put to death in the United States in the modern era.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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Documentary

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Release Date:

January 2002 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I ektelesi tis Wanda Jean  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,386 (USA) (6 September 2002)

Gross:

$1,386 (USA) (6 September 2002)
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Connections

References The Shawshank Redemption (1994) See more »

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User Reviews

 
3.5 stars
18 April 2002 | by (Silicon Valley, CA) – See all my reviews

As someone who is opposed to capital punishment, I found this story of a somewhat retarded black lesbian woman on death row in Oklahoma very difficult to watch. The lawyer who originally defended her was, by his own admission, unqualified, and was only paid $800 for his work. He totally botched the case, and the efforts documented in this film to introduce evidence of her retardation and brain damage which was inexplicably omitted by the original attorney were blocked at every turn. The filmmakers originally got involved to make a tape for Wanda Jean's clemency hearing, but continued to document the case after that failed.

The main investigator working for Wanda Jean was at the screening on 2/28/2002, and he said that based on the evidence he heard when he first became involved, he never expected to lose. Some of his scenes in the film are heartbreaking to watch. Wanda Jean, meanwhile, remains upbeat and highly religious to the very end. This film has since aired on HBO. Seen at Cinequest (the San Jose, CA film festival).


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