Documentary on the Friedmans, a seemingly typical, upper-middle-class Jewish family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his youngest son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes.
Berlinger and Sinofsky's documentary of a gruesome triple murder in West Memphis, Arkansas and the subsequent trials of three suspects, takes a hard look at both the occult and the American justice system in 'small-town' America. Three teenagers are accused of this horrific crime of killing three children, supposedly as a result of involvement in Satanism. As in their previous documentary, things turn out to be more complex than initial appearances and this film presents the real-life courtroom drama to the viewer, as it unfolds.Written by
Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>
Damien reads this Shakespearean quote while on trial: "Life's but a walking shadow...full of sound and fury signifying nothing." He incorrectly refers to it as being from A Midsummer Night's Dream. It is fact a soliloquy famously from Macbeth. See more »
I can't imagine what was going through Michael's mind. You know, was he... calling for me?
Was he conscious or unconscious? Did he watch the other two boys get cut?
He was really being killed by real monsters.
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Truth may be stranger than fiction, but the American courtroom is stranger, still. For the two hours during which I've watched this film I've gained a valuable insight into the nature of the witch trials. I feel powerless, as there is not much I can do to help these kids. But perhaps there is a lesson in it for us, and everyone who has seen the film should have taken some mental notes. First -- never name youself or your children 'Damien' -- especially if you live in the Bible Belt. And, as a general survival strategy, do not be the black sheep of the local community. There may come the time when your eccentric behavior alone will be used against you to sentence you to death.
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