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Customer Review

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't believe the truth, 1 Nov. 2008
This review is from: Capturing the Friedmans [DVD] [2003] [2004] (DVD)
To say this movie is 'thought-provoking' is perhaps putting it a bit lightly. "Capturing The Friedmans" should go down as one of the bravest and most honest films about the crime of paedophilia ever made: it makes no judgements, it takes no sides, it refuses to draw conclusions beyond the evidence (much of which is confusing, contradictory, and probably unreliable - from all sides).

It's easy in child-abuse cases to treat the accused as either monstrous perpetrator or misunderstood victim, but this film refuses to be drawn into either simplistic trap. Instead it shows, piecemeal, how testimony and evidence do not actually produce cut-and-dried cases, how the further into a story you go the more unclear it becomes, and how those with something to say are not always coming from unbiased standpoints.

This is less a film about child abuse than about the processes, hype and accusation-counter-accusation that accompany allegations of this sort. Somewhere in the middle of this disturbing story, there may well be victims who deserved better than the protagonists allowed them.

This film will leave a lasting impression on you, for a long time to come.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 26 May 2011 18:47:26 BDT
rosie cheeks says:
Reading your review, I found myself impressed with the depth you have provided within your response to a potentially difficult film to watch.
I studied this for my A Level Film Studies Documentary Module. At face value, you think a film with such a hard-hitting subject matter would be hard to appreciate, but the way in which Jarecki constructs and presents this to us is astounding. As you rightly say, he refrains from judgement and bias - a trait which is often implemented within a documentary - and offers a refreshing choice for the audience to determine who they believe.

If I hadn't come across this carefully constructed masterpiece through my studies, I am positive that you're balanced review would have persuaded me to purchase & watch it.

Well Done! :)

In reply to an earlier post on 27 May 2011 15:40:30 BDT
Rosie Cheeks:

Thank you. That's a genuinely encouraging thing to read. I'm glad you found something in my review that struck you as positive, and I'm really grateful that you posted your comment.

It's nice to get such feedback, and you should know it's positively received.

Martin

>>Potential Spoiler Alert<<

As an 'added anecdote', I remember seeing the film in the cinema, and there was a point at which the camera panned out from one of the men being interviewed, to show him sitting next to his gay partner. I was taken aback when a significant number of the audience members gasped in shock!
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