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Murder in the Heartland 

A wanna-be tough guy and his 14-year-old girlfriend go on a murder spree.




Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Complete series cast summary:
Randy Quaid ...  Elmer Scheele 2 episodes, 1993
Roberts Blossom ...  Gus Meyer 2 episodes, 1993
Tom Bower ...  Marion Bartlett 2 episodes, 1993
Rondi Reed ...  Jonette Fox 2 episodes, 1993
Bob Gunton ...  Governor Anderson 2 episodes, 1993
Ryan Cutrona ...  C. Lauer Ward 2 episodes, 1993
Angie Bolling ...  Clara Ward 2 episodes, 1993
Jake Carpenter ...  Robert Jensen 2 episodes, 1993
Heather Kafka ...  Carol King 2 episodes, 1993
Don Bloomfield Don Bloomfield ...  Bobby Colvert 2 episodes, 1993
John Hussey John Hussey ...  Mr. Jensen (1993) 2 episodes, 1993
James Hansen Prince ...  Deputy Sheriff Bill Romer 2 episodes, 1993
John S. Davies ...  Merle Karnopp 2 episodes, 1993
Mark Walters Mark Walters ...  Chief Robert Ainslie 2 episodes, 1993
Jennifer Griffin ...  Velda Bartlett 2 episodes, 1993
Milo O'Shea ...  Clem Gaughan 2 episodes, 1993
Gerry Bamman ...  Judge Brooks 2 episodes, 1993
Jeff Perry ...  Earl Heflin 2 episodes, 1993
Connie Cooper ...  Hazel Heflin 2 episodes, 1993
Fairuza Balk ...  Caril Ann Fugate 2 episodes, 1993
Brian Dennehy ...  John McArthur 2 episodes, 1993
Kate Reid ...  Pansy Street 2 episodes, 1993
Tim Roth ...  Charles Starkweather 2 episodes, 1993


A wanna-be tough guy and his 14-year-old girlfriend go on a murder spree.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Thriller


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Release Date:

1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Starkweather: Murder in the Heartland See more »

Filming Locations:

McKinney, Texas, USA See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Fairuza Balk cut her hair in the second episode. When she had to re-shoot scenes from the first episode, she wore a wig. See more »


Version of Starkweather (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

Murder In The Heartland
16 December 2014 | by a_baronSee all my reviews

In the 21st Century, serial murder and spree killings are two a penny, but when Charles Starkweather began his murder spree in December 1957, it was big news.

Aside from the callous and random nature of the murders, all but one of which were committed at the end of January 1958, there were other factors that caught the public eye, including the young age of the perpetrators: Starkweather was 19, and his girlfriend Caril Ann Fugate was only 14.

This film adheres closely to the facts of the case and is as much historical document as entertainment. The actual role of Fugate has never been properly resolved, but one issue that appears strangely never to have been raised is the nature of their relationship. Today, a 19 year old who has sex with a 14 year old is committing rape, or at best statutory rape. While in the UK the authorities take a pragmatic approach to girls just under the age of consent having sex with their slightly older boyfriends, today Fugate would have been considered a victim of "grooming" by Starkweather; it remains to be seen how this would have mitigated her involvement, but you can bet feminist mischief-makers would have made something of it.

Starkweather was executed for his crimes - we see him die in the chair - but Fugate was paroled after around 17 years. She is played here by Fairuza Balk who turns in a stellar performance, while Tim Roth plays the nihilistic Starkweather the way you imagine the man himself was, completely without emotion, murdering neither for money nor for sadistic thrills but simply because he could.

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