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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Broomfield at his best so far!
This is the third documentary of Nick Broomfield's that I have seen. The first one I saw was "Kurt & Courtney" which I enjoyed immensely and decided was worth the purchase. The other was "Biggie & Tupac" which I did'nt.
The biggest problem with the "Biggie & Tupac" film was that because everyone interviewed was so careful, as they could incriminate themselves or end...
Published on 12 May 2004 by Jean Bradbury

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better Documentary On The Second Try
Over ten years after Nick Broomfield released his documentary, "Aileen Wuornos - The Selling of a Serial Killer", he releases this 'update' of Aileen Wuornos life on death row. It's obvious from the sound and visuals that Bloomfield made some money from his first documentary. Ms. Wuornos trust is obvious and she gives Mr. Bloomfield plenty of smiling and energetic...
Published on 1 July 2004 by Martin A Hogan


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Broomfield at his best so far!, 12 May 2004
This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This is the third documentary of Nick Broomfield's that I have seen. The first one I saw was "Kurt & Courtney" which I enjoyed immensely and decided was worth the purchase. The other was "Biggie & Tupac" which I did'nt.
The biggest problem with the "Biggie & Tupac" film was that because everyone interviewed was so careful, as they could incriminate themselves or end up on the wrong side of the Crip or Blood gangs, nobody was willing to open up. With the "Kurt" film, Broomfield had to battle against adversity every step of the way through financing problems.
There are neither of these problems in the case of his second film about "America's first female serial killer" Aileen Wouronous. Everybody interviewed gives nothing less than their all and are completely willing to open up in interviews. The interviews with Aileen herself reveal her to be a surprisingly complex character, both angry and bitter but also charming and polite. It is this element that makes the film so watchable.
Without giving too much away, the film goes in depth into Aileen's childhood and reveals her lifelong battle against adversity, from when her mother abandoned her to her execution. Nick interviews many people including people who knew her as a youngster, the guy who represented (or should that be mis-represented!) her at the original trial and Aileen's mother.
Nick assumes a more unbiased stance in this film than he did in segments of his others. This comes across especially in his interviews with Aileen which take on a more conversational tone than the almost interogational and more judgemental approach that was used in his other films. This results in more openess allround and a better understanding of Aileen.
The film includes excerpts from Nick's currently unavailable film "The Making and Selling Of A Serial Killer" (his original film about Aileen fron 1992) as well as news footage of her from her original trial's to the day of her execution. It also includes an excerpt from the original police video of Aileen's confession as well as news footage of Jeb Bush commenting on his decision to sign her death warrant.
The interviews with Aileen herself are the most interesting part of this film. She is completely open about herself, her relationships and what she has (and has'nt!) done. She comes across not as a psychpathic killer but as a little girl lost, someone who could easily have achieved great things but was never given the chance by both her family and society at large.
It is a tragic story of someone who was tossed aside before her life had even begun, of someone who had to fight for everything she ever got (which was'nt much). Amazingly though, Aileen does not hang her head and drag her feet or cry into her glass, she laces many of the segments in which she is featured with good humour and does not let her dire situation drag her down, even on the days before her execution.
If you want the latest mindless trash from Hollywood go and see "Scooby Doo 2", if you want a great human interest story that draws from both a hateful and notorious but also funny, intelligent (some would mad, paranoid or both) and charming individual who was exploited from her earliest days to her final hours and beyond (someone will eventually write a book you can bet!) then you should give this a try.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nick Broomfield's second Aileen Wuornos documentary, 6 July 2004
By 
Lawrance Bernabo (The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
I saw Patty Jenkin's "Monster" but did not see British documentarian Nick Broomfield's 1992 work "Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer" before I watched his 2003 postscript "Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer." All of this happened after Aileen Wuornos was executed in Florida in 2002 for killing seven men who picked her up as a prostitute during the 1980s (one of who was trying to save her). Even without seeing "The Selling of Serial Killer" it is clear that the 1992 documentary was about how Wournos' flaky lawyer, the born again Christian who "adopted" her, and the cops who worked her case were all trying to make money off of the "America's first female serial killer" (the title taken from the "Guiness Book of World Records" is hyperbole, but what else is new). At the start of "Aileen" we learn that a whole bunch of cops resigned, which would seem to vindicate Bloomfield's position.
The original documentary matters when you watch "Aileen" because in many ways this one is about Broomfield having to deal with Aileen's confessions to the murders as he stubbornly holds on to the idea that at least the first killing really was in self-defense. That is what he wants to talk about at the end while, in a profoundly ironic twist, Wuornos wants to expand on the thesis of his first documentary and talk about how the cops knew she was killing man after the first one but let her keep doing it so they could get more money for selling the story rights. The question is whether Aileen is saying whatever she can to hasten her execution or if she has indeed told the truth, but Bloomfield refuses to believe it.
Bloomfield (and his cinematographer and co-director Joan Churchill) go back to the beginning of Wuornos' story, taking us to the house and woods in which she lived in Michigan before hitch hiking to Florida and what she through would be a happier life. There is no doubt about her guilt, or her insanity for that matter, but it is also clear that her life was pretty much a complete tragedy before she started killing men. All of her victims were essentially random choices and you know that in their grief their families wanted to know "Why?" "Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer" just shows that trying to answer that question, even in part and only inadequately, is not going to provide much peace.
Broomfield is clearly against the death penalty although making a case against the practice is only a tangent in the documentary that emerges mainly when he films the final interview with Wuornos the night before her execution and she is clearly mentally ill. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that mental illness is not an impediment to the death penalty, but Wuornos' ranting and raving at the end certainly gives you pause. Broomfield's most interesting assertion against the death penalty is that states without it have lower murder rates, which may be only correlational but still something to think about. My thought on the death penalty has been that since it costs the state about a $1 million to execute someone in this country we could surely take half that money and hire more cops and do other things to decrease the murder rate, but then I have always had this stubborn pragmatic streak.
There are no easy answers here, but everybody should have known that going into this documentary. "Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer" is an indirect examination of Wournos, her murders, and the death penalty. At the end we see the place where Wournos' ashes were scattered and the credits roll as we listen to the song she picked for her "funeral," Natalie Merchant's "Carnival." Maybe there is some significant message contained in that song, but Broomfield does not stop to contemplate it as such. Instead we get to consider it on our own as just another piece in the horror show that was Aileen Wournos' life and death.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Serial killer ?, 8 Jan. 2010
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Fantastic documentary by one of the leading films makers. Really shows the faults in the American legal/justice/prison system. The question is `Is she mad or not?`
Yes she killed a bunch of people but consider the story and reason behind that. The film is a must see for anyone interested in law/justice/legal system and how American can kill a mad women for political reasons.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed this its a must to watch, 27 Dec. 2012
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
I enjoyed the whole AILEEN WUORNOS story from both accounts of nick bloomfields views on her . It made me wonder also about her sanity and all the years on death row. To the very police officers who retired and gave up top positions because of their part in dishonesty and involvement in a film deal..
Ailleen herself i felt was the most honest of them all through it as whacky as her outbursts were at times and what she believed..Carol her only true friend who arranged her funeral requests after her exocution was really the only lifeline aileen had to the outside world and tyler moore her lover also abandoned her but enjoyed spending the money Aileen killed for.
Her so called adopted mother eileen pralle and steve the so called lawyer who in my case was an idiotic wanna be also made money from her for their own use. He then tried to deny it in court when it was obviously filmed and recorded evidence from the first interview with aileen..Nick done a really good job in exposing faults from all angles and worked closely with aileen that even he doubted whether it was fair to execute someone insane although psychiatrists claimed she was of sound mind its so clear she was not. If you have never watched this please do and make up your own mind.
Yes Aileen murdered these men in cold blood she admitted and never hid the fact her only reason which she said repeatedly was self defence because she was a hooker. Aileen,s mind then was clear it was while in the system aileen slowly lost her mind but, before she was executed Nick Bloomfield let us see inside the real Aileen Wuornus and his filming is spot on, true and sometimes edge of the seat viewing.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better Documentary On The Second Try, 1 July 2004
By 
Martin A Hogan "Marty From SF" (San Francisco, CA. (Hercules)) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Over ten years after Nick Broomfield released his documentary, "Aileen Wuornos - The Selling of a Serial Killer", he releases this 'update' of Aileen Wuornos life on death row. It's obvious from the sound and visuals that Bloomfield made some money from his first documentary. Ms. Wuornos trust is obvious and she gives Mr. Bloomfield plenty of smiling and energetic interviews. This second installment is less about the tragic life of Aileen Wuornos and more about her life after incarceration. Her initial hippie stoner lawyer is confirmed as the cad he always was and most of the 'sorry' information from the first documentary is only hinted at. Instead we see the last few days of this 'female serial killer' as she tries to bravely bring herself to terms with what she has done - along with blaming other persons (arguably) responsible for why she ended up where she is. No one is exempt from blame and no person is without guilt or suspicion. Even her biological mother is interviewed and the dialogue is unnerving. What is ironic is the point that Wuornos and Bloomfield make, in that, so many officials were scheming to make money off of the movie rights. Bloomfield ends up the winner in the blood-money pool with the only (two) documentaries on the life and death of Aileen Wuornos. Although it is a better crafted film that his first, the message and information is not new. The saddest revelation is that none of the participants comes out a winner. The bad and greedy side of humanity prevails and the viewer is left with tabloid pity and the loss of American innocence.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Aileen, 13 May 2004
This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
I thought this was an amazing insight to the world of Lee and gave viewers an opportunity to see who she really is. The truth and honesty of this notourius woman is to be admired. I strongly recommend this to anyone
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5.0 out of 5 stars A powerful documentary..., 23 Sept. 2011
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
After watching the movie "Monster" I did some research into Aileen's case and found that these documentaries had been made. Aileen truly is a fascinating woman, your curiosity will keep you glued to these documentaries especially 'The Life & Death Of A Serial Killer.'

Throughout the documentary leading up to her execution, we learn alot about the history of Aileen and her 'reasons' for killing. If you are trying to discover the motives behind these murders you will find yourself torn by your own judgement.

If you are interested in trying to understand the mind of a serial killer, this is for you.
I recommend it fully!
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 'An evil woman grows from a child full of hate', 17 May 2004
This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This film was really sad to watch. Sometimes you had to hate Aileen, but other times you wanted to bring her back to her childhood and hug and care for her. A child growing up after being given away by her real mother, lived with her blood father and step-mother whom she loved v.much. Her step-mother dies and her father finds her difficult. Sleeping around, she eventually falls pregnant and has to give her baby away and is thrown out of the family home. This 13 yr old girl lived in the woods for 3 years. Her only food and warmth came from the men she slept with for money. Living out of motels and often getting molested she turns to violence of the highest form and kills rich men out of hate. She claims it was all sefl defense but I'm not so sure. A riveting watch and makes you think deep into the mind of a murderer who stemmed from being hit, abused and stoned in the street as a child.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 11 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Aileen is fascinating to me she didn't get a fair trial although she was wrong it just wasn't right this is great for you to actually see a little of how she is and the things she thinks
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Film, 9 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
This is a great film for someone who likes the documentaries of serial killers, this woman was nuts and its worth a watch.
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