West of Memphis
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From director Amy Berg, in collaboration with first time Producers Damien Echols and Lorri Davis along with filmmakers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh comes West of Memphis, a powerful examination of a catastrophic failure of justice in Arkansas. The documentary tells the hitherto unknown story behind an extraordinary and desperate fight to bring the truth to light. Told and made by those who lived it, Berg's unprecedented access to the inner workings of the defense, allows the film to show the investigation, research and appeals process in a way that has never been seen before; revealing… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 95%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It's not a new story, true, but "West of Memphis" makes it both extremely personal and universally painful."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"While the "Paradise Lost" films captured events as they unfolded in the heat of battle, "West of Memphis" has the luxury of at least partial closure."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"A documentary that distills 19 years of a witch hunt, a grass roots movement, lost leads, confusion, countless appeals, and hope into one remarkable movie that is hellbent on setting the record straight."
‑ Eric Melin, Scene-Stealers.com
"A sobering look at how the wheels of justice can be -- and are -- manipulated by political expediency and a small town's tendrils of the old boy network"
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Moving and gruesome, West of Memphis is an eloquent disquisition on the banality of evil."
‑ Leah Churner, Austin Chronicle
"We feel like we're watching an overlong true-crime television episode and not a movie."
‑ Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"A true-crime story that begins with a notorious murder case and grows into a chilling indictment of the American justice system."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"It effectively condenses what took the 'Paradise Lost' films nearly eight hours to reveal into a tight, snappy 149 minutes that affords you everything you need to know about the West Memphis Three."
‑ Al Alexander, The Patriot Ledger
"The film is so utterly transfixing you won't believe almost two-and-a-half hours have passed when the final credits roll."
‑ Tara Brady, Irish Times
""West of Memphis" re-examines evidence and retells the story in a methodical and procedural fashion in which even the false steps lead somewhere."
‑ Duane Dudek, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"A real-life horror story, made no less shocking by the familiarity of its early scenes."
‑ Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times
"And justice for all? Hardly."
‑ Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
"It's another case where, instead of a prosecution having to prove a case, a defendant has to choose the lesser of two evils. "This happens all the time," defendant Damien Echols says of the whole process, and he's right."
‑ Rob Thomas, Capital Times (Madison, WI)
"I would have preferred Jackson's clinically-presented project display a bit more reverence for the three young lives that were brutally taken some twenty years ago."
‑ Erick Weber, NECN
"More a recap and appendix to the Paradise Lost trilogy... one can't help but feel that the celebrities involved needed this document of their efforts to appease their vanity."
‑ Jeff Meyers, Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
More reviews for West of Memphis on Rotten Tomatoes