This probably isn’t a film you should choose to watch during these uncertain times of pandemic. I, for not entirely clear reasons, was drawn to it nevertheless. I love a good true crime documentary as probably most people I know, but this was nothing I had expected.
Produced in Japan in 1981 it is composed entirely of archive materials sealed with the deep voice of a narrator who tells you a short story of increased senseless violence in America. It starts with the assassination of JFK in 1963 and finishes with John Lennon’s death in 1980 leaving no hope for the more peaceful future. In between, it covers cases of some of the most macabre kidnappings, sniper shooting massacres, notorious serial killers such as Ted Bundy and Ed Kemper, gas station murders, and riots.
Some of the decades-old footage is shocking to watch and fragments of interviews with Ed Kamper or James Hoskins are just chilling. Even more disturbing is the fact that screening it almost 40 years after it was produced, nothing indicates that anything has changed. Although America is possibly still one of the most violent nations, violence is contagious (following Adam Kucharski’s theory in The Rules of Cantaigions). And it pains me to see that hatred and intolerance followed by violence spreads.
I watched it on Amazon Prime