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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Politics > Law > Murder > Sacco & Vanzetti (2006 Documentary)

Sacco & Vanzetti (2006 Documentary)


Picture: C+†††† Sound: C+†††† Extras: C†††† Documentary: B



Though the story was made into a feature film in 1971, I never thought the story of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti was told properly or thoroughly.That film was often wooden and when the film ended, the period piece and any impact were oddly thrown off by a sudden end theme by Joan Baez.It is one of the most notorious, shocking and sad miscarriages of justice in the history of the U.S. legal system and is the kind of history that keeps repeating itself since there are more than as few people who want to bury this key piece of history.


Peter Millerís new documentary on Sacco & Vanzetti (2006) is very thorough to the point of even using a few clips from the 1971 film, but it is a very strong 82 minutes with interviews, thorough case examination and proof that it was very much an establishment, media and government witch hunt of two men over their political views, their ethnicity and the fact that they were of a lower socio-economic class.Especially at the time in the 1920s, getting justice was even tougher.Accused of murder in 1920, despite the best efforts of some good people, they were executed in 1927 releasing a wave of the political Left and changing the country forever.


John Turturro (Vanzetti) and Tony Shalhoub (Sacco) supply their voiceover voices and everyone from Arlo Guthrie to Howard Zinn are interviewed.This is another must-see documentary from a great cycle of recent politically and socially conscious releases.On the 80th anniversary of their execution, the ugliness of the case echoes disturbing as to what is happening today and especially those who know nothing about the case should mark this down as a must-have.


The anamorphically enhance 1.78 X 1 image was shot in digital High Definition, but also has all kinds of film and video footage from literally over eight decades.Nicely edited together, the impact is always strong without being manipulative. The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is simple and sometimes goes to mono, but is pretty good.Extras include a stills section, text filmmaker biographies, trailers for five other political First Run programs, suggested readings, Q&A text on the men and interview with the director.



-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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