Saturday, June 15, 2013

An Unreal Dream: The Michael Morton Story (2013) Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2013

This is the story of Michael Morton who was wrongly convicted for killing his wife the day after his birthday in 1986. While he was at work some one beat his wife to death. The police, basing their decision pretty much solely on the time of death based as determined by the digestion of food in stomach arrested him. They did this despite testimony from other medical experts saying the method was highly unreliable. Sent away to prison he had to wait decades to be released.

This is a good  film that looks at the course of one case and the cost of justice denied by showing how the long stay in prison changes the wrongly convicted and the family he leaves behind, who in this case really thought he was guilty.

You'll forgive me for not saying a great deal about the film but while it's a solid film its nothing super special. Aside from daring to deal with the damage done to families, the film is about on par with a really good documentary that you'd see on one of the cable stations that specialize in true crime stories. This isn't to sell the film short, it is quite good, rather it's like watching one of those episodes but without commercials. Actually the real question I have is why is the film 90 plus minutes since the story is a bit too straight forward to support the length.

I like the film. I can't say more than that.

The film plays tomorrow and Tuesday. Details at The Human Rights Watch Film Festival website.

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