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Paradise Lost (Collector's Edition) (Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills / Paradise Lost 2: Revelations)

4.6 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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(Oct 28, 2008)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

From Emmy award-winning filmmakers Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky comes for the first time in one collector s edition two of the most shocking documentaries of all time about a gruesome triple murder in West Memphis.

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On May 6, 1993, the mutilated bodies of three 8-year-old boys were found in a shallow creek in West Memphis, Arkansas. A short time later police arrested three local teenagers, linking the boys' killings to a satanic ritual. One of the boys confessed. The intriguing court case was about to unfold as filmmakers Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky ventured forth to make the Emmy-winning documentary Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills. They captured footage of not only courtroom proceedings but also interviews with the major players in trial--parents, suspects, lawyers. The documentary filmmakers, whose previous film, Brother's Keeper, is as intriguing a crime story you'll ever see, tells this story without re-creations or flashbacks. The film makes a clear argument that the court trial may not be about witchcraft but a witch hunt. As with any great drama, the faces and situations are etched upon the viewer; however, we are dealing with real lives and real crimes (told gruesomely and necessarily by police photographs and videotape), and the impact is far greater. And so is the maddening ambivalence of the trial. Like the O.J. Simpson fiasco, a verdict is reached but the truth is questioned. Did police make fatal errors the night of the crime? Do last-minute clues lead to justice? Who's lying on the stand? As with Roger and Me and Hoop Dreams, we have a provocative single incident that holds a mirror to many of society's problems. The results are just more horrifying. --Doug Thomas

Four years later, Directors Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky return to the scene of the crime with Paradise Lost 2: Revelations, the urgent follow-up to their harrowing 1996 documentary, Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills. That profoundly disturbing film chronicled the tragic and twisted case of three young men--Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin, and Jessie Misskelley--who were convicted of the brutal 1993 murders of three second graders. Revelations, which, for those who missed the first film, efficiently recaps the case, and charts the trio's maddening appeals process (police browbeat a confession out of Misskelley, who has an IQ of 71, after 12 hours of questioning), as well as the efforts of a group of Internet advocates to "Free the West Memphis Three." Byers is back as well, and he is infinitely more terrifying than anything in Book of Shadows, Berlinger's Blair Witch sequel. We learn that Byers had all his teeth extracted in the years after the murders (human bite marks are among the new evidence introduced). We also learn that his wife has since died of undetermined causes. When Byers passes a suspect lie detector test, he exults, "I knew I was innocent." A further mystery is why both Paradise Lost films have not garnered the media attention or sparked the outrage that attended Errol Morris's The Thin Blue Line, which led to the release of an innocent man who was imprisoned for more than 10 years. Both films give new meaning to the concept of reasonable doubt. --Donald Liebenson


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Directors: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: DOCURAMA
  • DVD Release Date: October 28, 2008
  • Run Time: 280 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001CDEGWM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,666 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
These docs are scarier than anything Hollywood could ever come up with. In West Memphis, Arkansas it is now a capital crime to be a teenage outcast. This is the story of six boys. Three were killed by an unknown perpetrator(s) the other three are being systematically murdered by the State of Arkansas. The total failure of the justice system should shock and anger any American who loves their country. Watch these docs and prepared to be angry.
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This doco is like watching a train wreck in slow motion under water and completely helpless. Heart breaking and terrifying all at once. If there is any justice in America, which I sadly doubt, then these young men will be set free and that monster will be put behind bars for life. You are about to witness one of the scariest real life psychos you have ever clapped eyes on, he would eat Hanabal Lecter alive for breakfast and pick his teeth with bones whilst trying to illicit sympathy from anyone daft enough to give it. He will stand one day before the Lord he claims is his king. Judgment day means no one gets away with anything. This monster will pay for what he did. One can only hope these young men get their day in court before a judge and jury that believe in justice and can see the truth. Amazing, but disturbing doco. Well worth 5 stars. Also, check out The Staircase.
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Format: VHS Tape
"Paradise Lost" is a documentary film that will permanently open viewers' eyes to the tragic miscarriages of justice that can occur in the American court system. Warning: Viewing this film may result in emotional discomfort and sleepless nights.
With more felony cases being reopened and overturned every day, often due to reexamination of physical evidence with DNA testing unavailable when the cases were first tried, false convictions are beginning to cause a stir in the public consciousness. "Paradise Lost," however, depicts not a case in which physical evidence was misinterpreted, but something much more disturbing: a horrific murder case in which a justice department, law enforcement organization and twelve members of a jury chose to prosecute and convict three easy (but likely innocent) targets rather than do the difficult work of searching out the actual guilty party.
"Paradise Lost" is a warning cry to all Americans, demonstrating that innocence is *not* always assumed until guilt is proven, and that a rush to judgement can create situations of unparalleled injustice.
For more information, visit the West Memphis Three Support Site...
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I was not prepred for what this movie had in store. It was a great documentary regarding the three individuals accused of murdering three innocent boys in Robin Hood Hills. I picked this movie out of the blue for a movie review that I had to complete for my criminal justice class and I am glad I did! The movie doesn't waste time getting right to the point of the matter. I have my own beliefs about what really happened and whose to blame but its certainly not that guy that appeared in the restaurant, its clearly someone else in the documentary, but that's my thought. View the movie for yourself and see if we arrive at the same conclusion. Great real life documentary.
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There are actually three parts to Paradise Lost. Each focuses on differnet aspects of this absolute miscarrage of justice. If you care about something other than yourself, then this will move you to want to take action and FAST!!!! It has graphic images, just a small warning. Please don't let that stop you from getting the whole documentary. Like I said before this is a real eye opener. I still get angry when I watch it or even think about what the three men went through (and are still dealing with). What got me to want to purchase this set (would have gotten all three, but a friend gave me her extra copy) was a "social night" my colleges paralegal association held. We watched the 3rd installment and I was captivated within the first 10 minutes. By the end, if you are like me, you will be either very angry and/or moved to stop this from continuing to happen (both for me). If you are human and are moved to take action after seeing this I would also suggest looking into some of the books that have been writen about this case and one by one of the wrongfully convicted men. Please become part of the change that needs to happen ASAP!!!!
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I first learned about the West Memphis Three when I was working promotions for an album being produced to raise money for their defense effort, after doing some reading I learned of the HBO documentary on this case, and after watching this I was just in a state of shock on how our justice system worked. Since then they have been release, but for anyone that wants an education on the dark side of justice pick up a copy of this and give it a watch.
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I could go on for days about these documentaries. If you have not seen them, please, please do. This DVD set has the first two documentaries, but you need to see the third as well. It comes out in August (2012) on DVD.

This case shows the corruption of the legal system and the consequences of unchecked hysteria. I have followed it since 1997, and what happened to those three still makes me just as sick today as it did then.
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