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Shattered Hopes: The True Story of the Amityville Murders - Part I: From Horror to Homicide (2011)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 16 December 2011 (USA)
A docudrama exploring the infamous 1974 mass murder of the DeFeo family by their eldest son and sibling. The case went on to spawn the "Amityville Horror" franchise of films.


Ryan Katzenbach


Ryan Katzenbach




Credited cast:
Edward Asner ... Narrator
Remy Bogna Remy Bogna ... Allison DeFeo
Don Bonander Don Bonander ... Juror
Wendy Bonander Wendy Bonander ... Jury Forewoman
Shawn Bordoff ... William E. Weber
Josh Bower Josh Bower ... Gerard Sullivan
D.T. Carney ... Detective
Chris Connell ... Billy Davidge
Terra Davenport Terra Davenport ... Juror
Allison DeFeo Allison DeFeo ... Self
Dawn DeFeo Dawn DeFeo ... Self
John Matthew DeFeo ... Self
Marc DeFeo ... Self
Geraldine DeFeo-Gates ... Self
Agnes Dosio Agnes Dosio ... Juror


In the sweat of an autumn night in November 1974, Ronald DeFeo gunned down his entire family -- father Ronald Sr., mother Louise, brothers Marc and John, and sisters Allison and Dawn as they slept. Within 48 hours, DeFeo had been arrested and was convicted the following year of the mass murder. Today, DeFeo remains incarcerated at Green Haven Correctional Facility in upstate New York. Shattered Hopes initially explores the "official" widely accepted account of the murders while conducting an extensive forensic analysis of the case which clearly suggests that DeFeo could not have committed the crime alone. For nearly four decades, DeFeo has maintained that his sister and another party played a role in the events that transpired at 112 Ocean Avenue. Now, for the first time ever, Shattered Hopes strips away the hazy of mystery behind the infamous Dutch Colonial home and investigates those claims. Pairing vivid reenactments of life in the DeFeo home with extensive and often exclusive ... Written by KatcoMedia

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For God's Sake, They Were Trying to Get Out.




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Blend of Truth and Speculation
16 October 2012 | by atlantic965See all my reviews

You have to give the producers credit, they did unearth rare Defeo family photographs and got interviews with 3 close family friends who have not spoken about the family since 1974. The fundamental problem is the basis of this documentary is the unreliable testimony of Geraldine Defeo who may or may not have married to Butch Defeo and has been called a fraud by many authorities on the Defeo Murders. I do agree with the producers it is impossible Butch Defeo committed the crimes alone but that sister Dawn took part has been debunked by forensic science. Brigante mob ties too were long ago dismissed. Mike Brigante did have some friends who were outfit guys and may have had some dealings with them on some minor level but the half of the Buick dealership was his own earned through hard work in the automobile business since the end of WWII. The Defeo Murders were the story of a family that could have been your neighbors or mine who were all killed by their mentally disturbed son who found access to a shot gun.

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Release Date:

16 December 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shattered Hopes: The True Story of the Amityville Murders - Part I: From Horror to Homicide See more »


Box Office


$200,000 (estimated)
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KatcoMedia See more »
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