Incendiary: The Willingham Case
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Incendiary: The Willingham Case
In 1991, Cameron Todd Willingham's three daughters died in a Corsicana, Texas house fire. Tried and convicted for their arson murders, Willingham was executed in February 2004 despite overwhelming expert criticism of the prosecution's arson evidence. Today, Willingham's name has become a call for reform in the field of forensics and a rallying cry for the anti-death penalty movement; yet he remains an indisputable "monster" in the eyes of Texas Governor Rick Perry, who ignored the science that could have saved Willingham's life. Equal parts murder mystery, forensic… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 82%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Alarming viewing for anyone who cares about the American justice system."
‑ Sheri Linden, Los Angeles Times
"It's a sobering look at the danger of fallible people making irreversible decisions."
‑ Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger
"As sober as a lab report, the excellent documentary metes out its findings with calm precision."
‑ John Esther, UR Chicago Magazine
"Documentary about injustice piles on facts still needs to make a cinematic case [with] better graphics and clearer explanations. . .Fire images visually drown out reasoning."
‑ Nora Lee Mandel,
"Incendiary contends that even if it's too late to save Todd Willingham, it's also long past time for the officials who ignored this obligation, Rick Perry included, to own up."
‑ Cynthia Fuchs, PopMatters
"Highly engaging."
‑ Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News
"Mr. Martin is confident in his convictions. The filmmakers are confident about their science. Justice, this strong documentary asserts, is at risk in the division."
‑ David DeWitt, New York Times
"Rather flatly told but still engaging throughout, this doc should appeal to both newsmagazine junkies and those impassioned by the death penalty debate."
‑ Brent Simon,
"Despite the occasional broad-brush stroke, the filmmakers refuse to tell the viewer which side to take. There's no big-bang ending that tells the audience, once and for all, where the film or filmmakers stand."
‑ Shannon M. Houston, Paste Magazine
"A formally conventional but provocative, and perhaps even important, piece of non-fiction pleading, worthy of being on a double bill with another bit of Texana, Errol Morris' 'The Thin Blue Line.'"
‑ Frank Swietek, One Guy's Opinion
"Raises interesting and important questions but suffers from poor organization and glosses over or ignores inconvenient facts."
‑ Kyle Smith, New York Post
"It's too bad that Steve Mims and Joe Bailey, Jr.'s documentary Incendiary doesn't reach more effectively beyond those who already share its assumptions."
‑ Sam Adams, AV Club
"starts as a meticulous deconstruction of injustice, but ends up feeling more like an elaborate, preaching-to-the-choir anti-Perry campaign film"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"Through the use of visuals and extensive interviews, Mims and Bailey have turned the Willingham case into a gripping saga."
‑ Charles Ealy, Austin American-Statesman
"Like a match being lit to a tinderpile of flimsy evidence that led to the execution of Cameron Todd Willingham in Texas in 2004."
‑ Marshall Fine, Hollywood & Fine
More reviews for Incendiary: The Willingham Case on Rotten Tomatoes