At the Death House Door
Want to See
Not Interested
Rate it ½ star
Rate it 1 star
Rate it 1½ stars
Rate it 2 stars
Rate it 2½ stars
Rate it 3 stars
Rate it 3½ stars
Rate it 4 stars
Rate it 4½ stars
Rate it 5 stars
"At the Death House Door" is a personal look at the death penalty in the state of Texas. The story is told by Pastor Carroll Pickett, who served 15 years as the death house chaplain to the infamous "Walls" prison unit in Huntsville. During Pickett's remarkable career journey, he presided over 95 executions, including the world's first lethal injection. After each execution, Pickett recorded an audiotape account of his trip to the death chamber.The film also focuses on the story of Carlos De Luna, a convict Pickett counseled and whose execution troubled Pickett more… More
Directed By
© Independent Film Channel (IFC)
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"At the Death House Door is a sobering account of Pickett's gradual evolution from pro-death penalty minister to a man struggling to reconcile his complicated role in those deaths."
‑ Loren King, Chicago Tribune
"makes great sense from a journalist's perspective."
‑ Philip Martin, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
"A documentary that feels even more relevant with the upcoming Supreme Court discussion of lethal injection in June."
‑ Brian Tallerico, The Deadbolt
"[The directors'] touch is artistic but not pretentious, utilizing music and other cinematic effects sparingly -- just enough to elevate the film from public-television special to high art."
‑ Eric D. Snider, EricDSnider.com
"The directors of Hoop Dreams and Stevie turn their documentary lens on capital punishment through the experiences of Rev. Carroll Pickett, the chaplain of Texas' Huntsville Prison, where he ministered to 95 condemned inmates in their final hours."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"brings to light the personal struggles of a dedicated man who has been facing life and death issues on the front lines"
‑ John A. Nesbit, Old School Reviews
"Rarely has the unholy alliance between Church and State been so succinctly delineated than in this detail-rich documentation of the near-daily ritual of purging the glorious state of Texas of its 'worst of the worst'."
‑ S. James Wegg, JWR
"an involving film with fresh perspectives that should ensure appeal on the activist and festival circuits."
‑ John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter
"A measured portrait of a pastor who morphed from an advocate of the death penalty to an advocate for a maximum sentence of life without parole."
‑ Harvey S. Karten, Compuserve
"a powerful rumination on the death penalty, but perhaps because Rev. Pickett isn't a firebrand, the film is curiously disaffecting."
‑ Sean McBride, Sean the Movie Guy
More reviews for At the Death House Door on Rotten Tomatoes