MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 1,000 this week

West of Memphis (2012)

R  |   |  Documentary  |  22 November 2012 (Portugal)
7.9
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.9/10 from 5,806 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 26 user | 106 critic | 27 from Metacritic.com

An examination of a failure of justice in the case against the West Memphis Three.

Director:

Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $0.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

IMDb Picks: May

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in May, sponsored by COVERGIRL.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 27 titles
created 04 Feb 2013
 
a list of 34 titles
created 02 May 2013
 
a list of 26 titles
created 10 Aug 2013
 
a list of 46 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 23 titles
created 1 month ago
 

Related Items

Search for "West of Memphis" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: West of Memphis (2012)

West of Memphis (2012) on IMDb 7.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of West of Memphis.
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Documentary | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

A horrific triple child murder leads to an indictment and trial of three nonconformist boys based on questionable evidence.

Directors: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky
Stars: Tony Brooks, Diana Davis, Terry Wood
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A further followup of the case of the West Memphis Three and the decades long fight to exonerate them that finally gained traction with new DNA evidence.

Directors: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky
Stars: Gary Gitchell, Todd Moore, Dana Moore
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The case of the West Memphis Three, its questionable circumstances and the parties involved are followed up years later.

Directors: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky
Stars: Damien Wayne Echols, Melissa Byers, Norris Deajon
Documentary | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Documentary about Father Oliver O'Grady, a Catholic priest who was relocated to various parishes around the United States during the 1970s in an attempt by the Catholic Church to cover up his rape of dozens of children.

Director: Amy Berg
Stars: Oliver O'Grady, Thomas Doyle, Adam
Documentary | Biography | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

When Warren Jeffs rose to Prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints, he took control of a religion with a history of polygamous and underage marriage. In a short time, ... See full summary »

Director: Amy Berg
Stars: Sam Brower, Nick Cave, Andrew Chatwin
One for Ten (2013)
Documentary | Short | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

One For Ten is a series of interactive documentary shorts which feature the stories of people who were sent to death row, only to be later released after being found to be innocent.

Directors: Will Francome, Mark Pizzey
Stars: Lewis Black, Damien Wayne Echols, Danny Glover
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

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.

Directors: Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Kharey Wise
Ring Girls I (2015)
Sport
Director: Amy Berg
Stars: Queen Underwood
Director: Amy Berg
Stars: Nate Parker
Polarized (2007)
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Director: Amy Berg
Stars: Stanley Tocktoo, Raymond Weyiouanna, Fred Weyiouanna
Drama

West Memphis Three." Murder and deception in a small Arkansas town. Three boys committed of a horrific murder, but did they do it? Based on True Events.. Genre: Drama/thriller/True Crime

Director: Monte Hellman
Stars: Jacob Reynolds
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Michael Baden ...
Himself (as Dr. Michael Baden)
...
Himself
Holly Ballard ...
Herself
Jamie Clark Ballard ...
Herself
Jennifer Bearden ...
Herself
Patrick Benca ...
Himself
Steve Braga ...
Himself
Karen Bruewer ...
Herself
David Burnett ...
Himself
John Mark Byers ...
Himself (as Mark Byers)
Michael Carson ...
Himself
Dennis Carter ...
Himself
Joyce Cureton ...
Herself
...
Herself
Vincent Di Maio ...
Himself
Edit

Storyline

West of Memphis is an examination of a failure of justice in Arkansas. The documentary tells the hitherto unknown story behind an extraordinary and desperate fight to bring the truth to light. Told and made by those who lived it, the filmmakers' unprecedented access to the inner workings of the defense, allows the film to show the investigation, research and appeals process in a way that has never been seen before; revealing shocking and disturbing new information about a case that still haunts the American South. Written by Production

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing violent content and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

|

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

22 November 2012 (Portugal)  »

Also Known As:

West of Memphis  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$13,360 (USA) (28 December 2012)

Gross:

$309,864 (USA) (19 April 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: Episode #10.1 (2013) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Leaves a bitter taste in the mouth
9 June 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The 'West Memphis 3' were first brought to my attention back in 2007/2008 when I viewed the astonishingly eye-opening documentary Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (1996), which I watched back-to-back with its sequel Revelations: Paradise Lost 2 (2000). The case was so fascinating due to its unbelievable revelations of the flaws in the American justice system that I was more than happy to spend over 5 enthralling hours of my night watching it unravel. Those films brought mass attention to the case, due to the fact that the three accused - Damien Wayne Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley - were so blatantly innocent of this terrible crime. I assumed justice would prevail, and it soon left my mind. So it was shocking to learn upon the release of the third instalment of the trilogy, Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory (2011), and this, West of Memphis, that these three were still in prison, 19 years after the murders, with everything from mere bureaucracy and political motivations standing in their, and thousands of others, way.

For those unacquainted with the case, back in 1993, the mutilated bodies of three young boys - Christopher Byers, Steven Branch and Michael Moore - were found in a stream in the Robin Hood Hills, West Memphis. With no evidence, prosecutors quickly deemed the murders a result of Satanic ritual, due to (apparently) sexual mutiliation, and sought out any locals known to practise such an art. They were given the names of three youngsters, Echols, Baldwin and Miskelley, who were known to listen to heavy metal music and act much like your typical isolated, 'gothic' teenagers. Through manipulation of the jury, and a trial by media, the three were quickly convicted (again, with no evidence against them, apart from a heavily dubious 'confession' by the borderline mentally retarded Misskelley). They were given life, with Echols possibly facing the death sentence. Interest in the case quickly gathered, due to many aspects not making any sense, and gathered support of musicians such as Metallica, Henry Rollins, Patti Smith, and Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam. West of Memphis focuses on the fight to free the West Memphis 3, with new evidence gathered and possibly a revelation as to who the killer may actually be.

West of Memphis doesn't spend much time treading the same ground as the Paradise Lost trilogy, and quickly covers the original trial. It consists mainly of original footage, such as the lawyers and investigators funded by supporters of the West Memphis 3 and various celebrities such as the film's producers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh trying to find fresh evidence in favour of the 3, and footage of the various concerts designed to raise awareness and make money. But where West of Memphis truly invigorates is the alarming case built against Terry Hobbs, stepfather of Steven Branch, who was all but ignored by police in the original investigation. Paradise Lost 2 brought up the possibility of another stepfather, John Mark Byers, being the culprit, but often felt like he was a suspect due to him simply being quite strange, which seems hypocritical considering the West Memphis 3 were convicted for the same reason. But there is strong evidence against Hobbs, such as a violent past, the lack of an alibi during the time of the deaths, and his hair being found within the knot of the shoelaces to which the three boys were hog-tied with.

Above all, West of Memphis is a staunch reminder of the darkness of this case. This was a horrific crime, almost beyond belief (and the sights of the three corpses really hammers this home), and an equally disturbing path of 'justice' that followed. This is a deep, dark stain on the American justice system, where political aspirations, ignorance and outright lying stand in the way of true justice. They do walk free in the end, but not without leaving a bitter taste in the mouth. They had 19 years of their life stolen from them, yet to be free they must plead guilty to a crime everyone knows they did commit. In the eyes of the law, the West Memphis 3 are child murderers, while the real murderer walks free with a clean name. The Paradise Lost films and West of Memphis, if anything, are a testament to the power of film, along with Errol Morris' The Thin Blue Line (1988), which exposed police ineptitude and helped set an innocent man free, but above all else, they are a terrifying and utterly depressing indictment of a country that needs to take a good look at itself.

www.the-wrath-of-blog.blogspot.com


14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
i really want to believe in their innocence but... simonwilliams555
Guilty as charged mrquint73
Analyzing Jessie's 02/08/94 'Bible Confession' cosmo_the_writer
What were the WM3's alibis? strongbad-274-706634
Damien Ttebow15
If they didn't do it, who did? Maverick410
Discuss West of Memphis (2012) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page