Friday, February 8, 2013

West of Memphis

Ordinarily I prefer my narrative films dark and my documentaries light.  I just don't look forward to heavy docs, perhaps because they're real and it's hard to watch dark material when it's real.  That's why I generally don't watch the news (except for Good Day on Fox 35, of course.)  So I wasn't particularly looking forward to this doc about the West Memphis Three, three kids imprisoned for 16 years for killing another child, but now thought by many to be innocent due to new evidence.  But it's a really powerful story that unfolds like a great mystery.  Did they do it?  Or was it someone else who got away scot-free?  It's intriguing, captivating, and disturbing.  And it's only flaw is its exorbitant 146 minute run time.  For a doc, that's pretty intimidating.  But it really doesn't feel long once it gets rolling.  Plus, look for appearances by filmmaker Peter Jackson, musician Eddie Vedder, and actor Johnny Depp, all supporters of freeing the West Memphis Three.
Grade: A-


  1. So does this make your Top Film list of 2012?

    1. Not quite. It's very good, but doesn't quite make my Top 53.