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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Politics > Murder > Assassination > Rain Forests > They Killed Sister Dorothy (2008/First Run DVD)

They Killed Sister Dorothy (2008/First Run DVD)


Picture: C     Sound: C     Extras: B     Documentary: B



The battle between big business and people trying to make a difference is always bad when those without big profits in mind are harassed or even worse, killed because they represent an obstacle in the way of companies who think money is more important than life.  Daniel Junge’s They Killed Sister Dorothy (2008) examines the circumstances and odyssey for justice surrounding what turned out to be the political assassination of Sister Dorothy Stang.


She was 73-years-old when gunned down in an ambush, sponsored as it was by big money forces who did not like the idea that she was trying to save the rainforest, created a functional community there and was stopping the area from being sold literally down The Amazon River.  We follow the murder, the case, the amazing lies and abuse by officials in Rio and how far the country has to go despite winning the recent Olympics bid to being a modern nation.


Martin Sheen narrates in his usual effective style and once again, we a have a story here that was amazingly neglected by the mainstream U.S. media despite the fact that this is a Catholic nun from Dayton, Ohio.  Guess she was fighting a battle more extraordinary than she ever thought.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is a mix of old low def analog, low def digital and new digital footage that tends to be on the soft side more than not, but that is to be expected, especially under the circumstances.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 sound is often monophonic and sometimes has stereo separation, but is uneven and sometimes compressed as well, but that is to be expected in how in was made.


Extras include stills, an update on the situation, SXSW Film Festival Premiere Q&A, text Director’s Statement & separate Biography, other recommended documentaries in the same vein and feature-length audio commentary track by Junge.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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