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Devil's Knot (2013)

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The savage murders of three young children sparks a controversial trial of three teenagers accused of killing the kids as part of a Satanic ritual.


Atom Egoyan


Paul Harris Boardman (screenplay), Scott Derrickson (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
2,467 ( 1,114)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Reese Witherspoon ... Pam Hobbs
Colin Firth ... Ron Lax
Alessandro Nivola ... Terry Hobbs
James Hamrick ... Damien Echols
Seth Meriwether ... Jason Baldwin
Kristopher Higgins ... Jessie Misskelley (as Kris Higgins)
Amy Ryan ... Margaret Lax
Robert Baker ... Detective Bryan Ridge
Collette Wolfe ... Glori Shettles
Rex Linn ... Chief Inspector Gitchell
Bruce Greenwood ... Judge Burnett
Kristoffer Polaha ... Val Price
Matt Letscher ... Paul Ford
Michael Gladis ... Dan Stidham
Stephen Moyer ... John Fogleman


Based on the actual events of the West Memphis Three, where three young boys were savagely murdered in West Memphis, Arkansas in 1993. Spurred on by the demand from a grieving town, the local police act quickly to bring three "devil-worshipping" teenagers to trial. With their lives hanging in the balance, investigator Ron Lax is trying to find the truth between the town's need for justice and the guilt of the accused. Written by Anne Campbell

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They say the crimes were satanic. The truth may be scarier. See more »


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]





Release Date:

12 March 2014 (Philippines) See more »

Also Known As:

Condenados See more »

Filming Locations:

Morrow, Georgia, USA See more »


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Datasat | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In this movie, Reese Witherspoon sings the Elvis Presley song "That's All Right". She was also featured singing this song in her first film, The Man in the Moon (1991). See more »


West Memphis police cars in the movie are correct in terms of make, model and markings. But the lightbars used are red & blue. West Memphis patrol cars have always featured all-blue warning lights. See more »


[first lines]
Stevie Branch: [sings] Well, that's all right, mama / That's all right for you / That's all right, mama, just any way you do.
See more »


Features Race with the Devil (1975) See more »


Alter of Sacrifice
Written by Jeff Hanneman (as Jeffery John Hanneman) and Kerry King
Performed by Slayer
Courtesy of American Recordings, LLC
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

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User Reviews

Complicated Crime Film Based on a True Story
23 December 2014 | by mrcibuburSee all my reviews

Like most films of this kind, it is a film based on a true story which happened in Arkansas in 1993. I am English and until watching this film, I had never heard of this story. However, some, if not many, might regard this right up there for notoriety with crimes put to movies such as Ted Bundy and others in the pipeline such as Madeleine McCann and Amanda Knox-Meredith Kercher.

This was a complicated story-line to absorb without knowing the story first and I took the chance to research it a little afterwards. Certainly the film focuses a great deal on Colin Firth as Ron Lax and Reese Witherspoon as Pamela Hobbs in the leading roles but it shows little light (perhaps as in the Knox-Kercher case which is still fresh in our minds) that the Arkansas wanted 'closure' and quickly and they set out fabricating a case against the three guys which only serves to show the sheer ineptitude of American justice or of any civilised country for that matter.

No real acting is required by Colin Firth, he just plays the part while Reese Witherspoon does step up as the emotional Mum grieving her lost Son. The background to the parenting of the three lost boys is not explained in this film.

I find it incredible that the film did not throw more light on the apparent satanic cult which was prevalent in that area at that particular time and which, had that been investigated and questions asked of those who were involved, just as in the McCann case in Portugal from 2007, there is the possibility that the crimes committed could be solved in a professional manner rather than left for people to comment and judge by social media in the present climate following release of the new evidence and the ultimate release of the three convicts in 2011.

I cannot say I enjoyed this film. It is definitely not a film to enjoy but I wonder whether the film could have carried a more subtle focus for a more connecting audience. 20 years on, I sense the film was made for financial reasons but who are the beneficiaries?

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