Carl Panzram is sent to Leavenworth Prison for burglary. While there, he is brutally beaten by a guard. Neophyte guard Henry Lesser feels sympathy for Panzram, befriends him, and gets him ...
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An LA police officer is murdered in the onion fields outside of Bakersfield. However, legal loopholes could keep his kidnappers from receiving justice, and his partner is haunted by overwhelming survivor's guilt.
Carl Panzram is sent to Leavenworth Prison for burglary. While there, he is brutally beaten by a guard. Neophyte guard Henry Lesser feels sympathy for Panzram, befriends him, and gets him to write his life story. Lesser learns that Panzram's past is much more violent than he thought, but also that he's capable of being a much better person than the rest of the prison staff believes - or so Lesser thinks.Written by
Jon Reeves <email@example.com>
The Australian biopic "Chopper" got all the hype in 2000, but the much lesser-known " A Journal of Murder" is actually a better film on a similar subject. For one thing, it gives you more of a background about (if not much more insight into) the killer, and for another it doesn't try to make him appear "cool". In fact, the script is quite uncompromising in the way it refuses to humanize Panzram, at least beyond the minimum degree required. But despite Woods' strong performance and a few nice directorial touches (especially in the use of black-and-white cinematography and newsreels from the period), the film is rather flat - almost like a TV production. (**1/2)
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