Thursday, February 20, 2014

Carl Panzram: The Spirit of Hatred and Vengeance (2012)

Director: John Borowski

Writer: ???

Composer: ???

Starring:  John DiMaggio, Tom Lodewyck, David Salmonson, Brett Jetmund, David Weiss, Douglas Wynne, Matthew Aaron, David Schmidt, William Knight, Henry Lesser

More info: IMDb

Plot: This documentary tells the story of early 20th-century serial killer Carl Panzram, who wrote his autobiography at the urging of Henry Lesser, a prison guard with whom he forged a strange friendship.

My rating: 8/10

Will I watch it again? Yes.

Currently on Netflix streaming, this fascinating documentary takes you on an amazing ride using Panzram's own words.  His voice over actor sounds like a deep voiced, menacing Kiefer Sutherland but after a while it works well enough I suppose. Like most of these types of criminals, you can't take everything they say at face value so they probably did less than what they purport but even if he did a fraction of what he admits to, it would make him a frightening figure.  He appears to be a product of his environment from which he emerged from being beaten and abused to a world which he wanted nothing but to exact revenge on as it had turned him into a bitter and hateful monster.  His goal was to rob, rape and kill everyone he could.  His prison escapes and travels are fascinating.  

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