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Life with Murder (2010)
4.7 (3 votes)

Life with Murder (2010)

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In early 1998, 18-year-old Jennifer Jenkins was found dead from multiple gunshot wounds in the basement of her family’s home in Chatham, an Ontario suburb across the water from Detroit. From the outset, suspicion fell on her brother, Mason, a habitual petty criminal who had just been released from jail. “Mason was tried and found guilty,” says mother Leslie Jenkins, who takes such pains not to say “Mason killed his sister” that anyone paying the least bit of attention will conclude that Mason did it, and that his mother knows it.

But the hows and whys are something else. There’s much, much more to the family story, and Kastner from the outset finds ways to tease out information in a way that maintains narrative momentum without giving away too much too soon. To his credit, the director knows what he’s got — subjects whose dynamic is so painful and awkward, and whose behavior is so charged with unspoken questions and horrifying realizations, that watching them is like witnessing a car wreck. And yet there are only so many facts in this case, and the way to them is paved with stagy re-enactments and an often tortured exercise in fact avoidance. Nevertheless, the parents, Brian and Leslie Jenkins, are unforgettable in how they cope with their loss, and with their son.

IMDB (7.0)

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