Update: On Oct. 3, 2011, Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito were acquitted of murder on appeal in Italy. DNA experts determined the DNA on the so-called murder weapon was actually from bread crumbs (as in victim Meredith Kercher handling the bread and some crumbs ending up on the knife). Knox's conviction for slandering Diya Lumumba was upheld, though evidence came out that Knox had implicated the bar owner after 50 hours of interrogation without a lawyer present. As of Oct. 3, 2011, Knox's parents still face trial for slander for accusing Italian police of brutality and intimidation. Written by
Gregory Marshall Smith
American girl Amanda Knox (Hayden Panettiere) travels to Italy to study but soon she's accused of murdering her roommate with the assistance of her boyfriend and another guy. Soon Knox's sex life and strange behavior become the key evidence in the trial, which she's convicted of but many seem to think a crooked Prosecutor is to blame. I first heard of this case soon after the real events happened and I remember that for the next year or so every media group was on the side that pointed the finger of guilt at Amanda. I lost track of the case until 60 Minutes did another episode on it and to my shock now everyone was saying that the girl was innocent and being framed by a questionable Prosecutor. This made-for-TV drama from Lifetime doesn't try to pretend to be a documentary and instead it purely wants to show that Amanda is innocent but for some strange reason the movie is never able to do this. There's no doubt that the intent behind this movie is to say that the Italian courts are full of evil people wanting to harm this angel-faced girl from Seattle but I personally need a lot more than just this. Not once are we ever really given an explanation for why Knox is innocent other than the Italians are bad people. This doesn't work for a number of reasons but the biggest one, in terms of this film, is that the Italian members are constantly made to give evil looks to the camera and after a while this just becomes laughable and it's a rather cheap way to try and make them look evil. I kept expecting the director and screenwriter to dress them all in black, put a mask on them and put knives in their hands. Another thing that doesn't work in the picture is that we never really get to understand the case, what actually happened or what might have happened. Yes, there are several re-enactments but they're all handled so poorly that you can't help but feel letdown. As with most "true story" movies, this one here changes a few facts around and tells a few lies of its own so needless to say people shouldn't be watching this thing expecting a documentary. I think the film should have tried to make its case a lot better and all in all it really does feel rushed and all over the place as if the filmmakers weren't sure what they wanted to tell or try to tell. The performances aren't too bad with Panettiere doing a nice job as Knox. I thought she was a lot better when she started to crack from the pressure and she's also quite nice when it comes time to address the courts. Vincent Riotta steals the film as the Prosecutor and Paolo Romio is good in his bit of Amanda's boyfriend. Marcia Gay Harden plays Amanda's mother and she's a tad bit too over-the-top during a few scenes. The story of Amanda Knox is far from over and let's hope a better movie will come out whenever the real story gets solved.
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