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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Murder > Cult > Crime > Telefilm > Cable TV > Manson's Lost Girls (2016/Lifetime/Lionsgate DVD)

Manson's Lost Girls (2016/Lifetime/Lionsgate DVD)

Picture: B- Sound: B- Extras: D Film: C+

Though there have been many interpretations of the infamous psychopath Charlie Manson and his crazy cult of women, this new TV Movie, Leslie Libman's Manson's Lost Girls (2016) from the Lifetime Network, will appeal to a new generation that may be unfamiliar with the story. The cinematography and production design is quite high for such a production, as is the soundtrack which is buzzing with many classic (and expensive to obtain) songs from the era.

Told through the story of Linda Kasabian (Mauzy) who leaves her comfortable home and moves to California, gets knocked up, and has her boyfriend move out on her. At a diner and out of options, she's soon taken to the cult of Manson, where she encounters other young women and men (and several children) living under the rule of Manson. At first, things seem great and the drugs don't stop coming but soon, these young ladies figure out something isn't quite right with old Charle and, well, you know how the story ends.

This telefilm stars MacKenzie Mauzy (Into the Woods), Eden Brolin (I Dream Too Much), Greer Grammer (Awkward), Christian Madsen (Divergent) and Jeff Ward (The Mentalist) as Charlie Manson, who actually looks and pulls off the role quite well.

Perhaps the biggest corner the film backs itself into is how familiar everyone in the world is about the infamous murders already so to that section of the audience there won't be many surprises. The lack of real famous faces also may fail to reel some in as well. It doesn't feel like a Lifetime movie, it feels like a film and is, as mentioned, shot and produced surprisingly well... so at least it has that going for it.

Presented in standard definition with an anamorphic widescreen presentation of 1.78:1 and a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 track, the film looks and sounds fine on DVD but would look better on Blu-ray. A digital copy is also included for your smart phone or tablet. No extras.

If you're interested in the Manson story or maybe aren't as familiar with it as you would like, then here's a nicely produced 90 minute interpretation of it with some new young faces you may recognize. Otherwise, there isn't anything about this adaptation that really makes it stand out or worthy of recommendation.

- James Lockhart



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