AILEEN WURNOS - THE SELLING OF A SERIAL KILLER

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Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer Cover
Nobody can profit from a murder, can they? The culprit will hopefully get caught. The families have lost a loved one. And nobody comes off any the better.  Or do they? Want to know more? Then please watch this documentary made in 1992 by Nick Broomfield, about Aileen Wuornos. It lasts for about 88 minutes.


Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer


THE STORY:
This Nick Broomfield documentary chronicles the turbulent life of the serial-killer, Aileen Wurnos, and the way in which her crimes have profited those people around her.

Now to help Nick charter this tale, he utilizes a number of sources made available to him. For example, archived television clips, real life footage of Aileen’s time in court and in prison, interviews with friends and foes alike, as well as first hand commentary from the woman herself, Aileen Wurnos.

Please note: Although Nick’s path to Aileen is a troubled one, he is still able to meander his way through numerous personages, all of whom appear to be either profiteering from his venture, or alternatively, just plain refuse to have anything to do with him. Nevertheless, Nick is determined to find out the truth behind this story, and he pieces together: (1) What the true nature of Aileen’s path of destruction was? And (2) Why are people able to make money from her crimes?

These are some of the people who aid him in answering these questions:

ACQUAINTANCES: Aileen last male companion, Dick Mills, irately speaks about her last week with him, and how the media has perverted Aileen's story to be something more that it was. Also, two of Aileen's pals from her local bar, 'the Last Resort', Cannonball and Jesse Aviles, speak of Aileen’s capture at this location.

AUTHORS: Two authors, Michael McCarthy and Mike Reynolds, try to elaborate the motives behind Aileen’s murder spree, surmising that her actions were due to her hatred of her father (who committed suicide in jail), a need to take care of her last love (Tyra Moore), plus her neglected and harsh upbringing (in Michigan).

STEVE GLAZER: Aileen’s second lawyer, Steve Glazer, is a rather jovial character all in all. His demeanor is quite refreshing compared to your average lawyer, and he does not seem really equipped to deal with Aileen’s case either. During Nick’s investigations, Steve acts as a mediator between Nick and Aileen's adoptive mother, Arlene Pralle, bartering appropriate fees for appropriate information.

ARLENE PRALLE: I am afraid to say that Arlene Pralle’s story is a costly one for Nick. Granted, at first, this does not seem so apparent -- because she coyly busies herself with her normal job (breeding horses) whilst keeping her opinions and her story to herself.

But then, once Nick pays up some cash, Arlene warmly tells him about how she adopted Aileen in prison, her spiritual nature, how she 'found' Aileen, and how she managed to persuade Aileen to change her plea from not guilty to no-contest (thus sealing Aileen’s fate and opening her pocket).

Eventually, Arlene's true colors are shown, leading Nick to...

AILEEN WURNOS: Initially, Nick is only allowed to get Aileen’s story from numerous media sources and snippet of information relayed to him from the other people in this tale. However, when he eventually does get to speak to Aileen herself, what she says to him confirms his suspicions. She’s irate with both Steve and Arlene for goading her to change her plea, whilst making money off of her crime in the process.

Others seem to have profited from Aileen as well, such as her last love (Tyra Moore),  her lover before that (both male and female), and then there's the media. Numerous magazine articles, movie deals, and other sources of publications have also gained from Aileen’s crimes. All engineered, one way or the other, by what Aileen refers to as the ‘crooked cops’. A story that is substantiated by...

SGT. BRIAN JARVIS: Brian was one of the police officers involved in the Aileen Wurnos case. And even though he is positive that she did commit the crimes she was charged with, at the same time he is unsure of her lover, Tyra Moore.

You see, when Brian was in the police force, he did try to pursue this matter further. But strangely, he was halted from doing do by ‘other officers’ who managed to: (A) Get him transferred out of the department. And (B) Break into his house and delete any information he had on his computer relating to Aileen’s case. Brian has tried to pursue this matter, yet he has been delayed from doing so.

Some months later, a number of officers resign from the police department due to a connection between them, a movie company, and Tyra Moore, relating to the Aileen Wurnos case.




THE REVIEW:
I first watched 'Aileen Wurnos - The Selling Of A Serial Killer' quite some time ago on television. Maybe a couple years after it was first produced. And do you know what? This program has had a strange affect on me since then. As it has opened up my eyes to a rather personable way of documentary filmmaking, as well as informing me of a rather alarming subject matter which I didn't think was possible.


Aileen Wuornos In Court


Well, my God! What an f*cked-up tale! Can you imagine that people are actually able to make money from a crime such as murder? Fair enough, in this documentary, Nick doesn't go to too much length to prove if Aileen did commit these murders or not. Instead, he concentrates on the sub-threat of this story (i.e. the 'selling part').

The strange thing with this is though, is that at the beginning of this film, it states the ‘Son of Sam’ law -- highlighting that no one can benefit from a crime. Then, after this is shown, it presents just the opposite -- many people benefiting from a crime!


Steve Glazer in Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer


Boy, you have to hand it to Nick, don't you! He’s one gutsy b*stard. Just ploughing his way through all these dubious characters, and presenting us with a true life tale behind a ghastly one. Also, in addition to this, this documentary is shown in a very nice way. With Nick acting in two capacities: (1) The tour guide for Aileen’s crimes. And (2) The investigator behind those people who are profiteering from her crimes. Moreover, Nick tries his best to stay impartial to everything around him, such as Aileen’s motives, Aileen’s past, and the way people are making money from Aileen.

However, there is one point in which he does let the proverbial cat out of the bag -- when he has a brash face off with bible basing money grabber, Arlene Pralle. Still, all in all, he does present a very well balanced documentary in which you -- the viewer -- decide who is guilty and who is innocent.


Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer


Now you have to remember that Nick made 'Aileen Wurnos - The Selling Of A Serial Killer' way before Charlize Theron's portrayal of her in the movie 'Monster. So now you know the film behind the film, it makes you think, huh? Was Aileen a martyr to money? Was she used as a device to highlight prostitution, murder, and a new breed of criminal? Why were police ever involved with a movie company? Plus, why did the media play a part in orchestrating a story for their project? Agreed Aileen?




Hmm? A very good documentary about a very troubling subject matter.

THE RATING: A