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Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple (2006)

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Featuring never-before-seen footage, this documentary delivers a startling new look at the Peoples Temple, headed by preacher Jim Jones who, in 1978, led more than 900 members to Guyana, where he orchestrated a mass suicide via tainted punch.

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1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rebecca Moore ...
Herself
Janet Shular ...
Herself
Tim Carter ...
Himself
Stanley Clayton ...
Himself
Hue Fortson Jr. ...
Himself
Garrett Lambrev ...
Himself
Claire Janaro ...
Herself
Neva Sly Hargrave ...
Herself
Deborah Layton ...
Phyllis Wilmore Zimmerman ...
Herself
Chuck Wilmore ...
Himself
John R. Hall ...
Himself
Tim Reiterman ...
Himself
June Cordell ...
Herself
Eugene Cordell ...
Himself
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Storyline

Featuring never-before-seen footage, this documentary delivers a startling new look at the Peoples Temple, headed by preacher Jim Jones who, in 1978, led more than 900 members to Guyana, where he orchestrated a mass suicide via tainted punch.

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26 April 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dödens tempel  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,482, 20 October 2006, Limited Release
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Christine Miller: [abridged dialogue from the infamous "Death Tape", which was recorded on the day of the massacre] I feel like, as long as there is life, there's hope. That's my faith.
Jim Jones: Well, someday we're gonna die... because everybody dies. I haven't seen anybody yet that didn't die. And I'd like to choose my own kind of death for a change. I'm tired of being tormented to hell, that's what I'm tired of. Tired of people's lives in my hands and I certainly don't want your life in my hands and I'm going to tell ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Good Dick (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Welcome
Performed by the People's Temple Choir
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User Reviews

 
A compelling story
26 September 2006 | by See all my reviews

I have heard about the cult "Peoples Temple" before, but I knew little about it. Through large amount of rare footages and in depth interviews of the Peoples Temple survivors and family members of the members of Peoples Temple, the documentary takes a deep look into this cult and tries to find out why 909 people committed "mass murder/suicide" on November 18, 1978 in Jonestown, Guyana.

This film is what a great documentary looks like. It goes beyond the headline and dig deep into the story. I begin to understand whom Jim Jones was. I begin to understand why so many people crossed the racial and social boundaries to come together and even devoted their lives to this cult leader and their "church." Many of the cult followers were struggling with the social injustice and racial discrimination in the 60s and 70s. Jim Jones offered them equality and sense of belonging that the society didn't offer. So Peoples Temple becomes their utopia where they could be so happy and united. Only the sad part is that later some of them realize they were betrayed and they had no way out.

This is definitely a great documentary I have seen this year and I surely hope it will get an Oscar nomination.


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