Crime of the Century (1996)

 

 

 

 

Director:     Mark Rydell.

Starring:     Stephen Rea (Hauptmann), Isabella Rossellini (his wife), J. T. Walsh, Michael Moriarty, David Paymer, Allen Garfield, Gerald S. O'Loughlin, Barry Primus, John Harkins, Bert Remsen, Jay Acavone. 

Lindbergh kidnapping trial

 

 

 

 

I did not like this movie.  It irritated me to say the least.  They wanted to make the case that Bruno Hauptmann, the convicted kidnaper and killer of the male child of Charles Lindbergh, was innocent.  I find the evidence for the innocence of Hauptmann unconvincing.  The fact that the police distort or withhold certain evidence seems hardly surprising and a procedure more standard than not (especially in these days when even police labs at times give DNA results the prosecution wants rather than the correct ones).  And the fact that Hauptmann continually asserted his innocence even until his execution is also more standard than not. 

The kidnapping occurred in the Sourland Mountain area of New Jersey in 1932.  The trial took place at the still existing courthouse in Flemington, New Jersey.

 

Patrick Louis Cooney, Ph. D.

 


Historical Background:

 

See Spirit of St. Louis (1957).

 

 

 

 

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