FILMS / BRIEF SURVEY / ON DEATH ROW I + II  
   
 
 © by Werner Herzog Film 

A two part series on an inside look at a maximum security prison in Texas featuring interviews with death row inmates.

  • Eight Portraits, 52 min each

Part I Portraits on

  • Hank Skinner

  • James Barnes

  • Joseph Garcia and George Rivas (executed February 29, 2012)

  • Linda Carty

Synopsis to Death Row I


by Werner Herzog
There are four films, portraits of Death Row inmates in Texas and Florida, with a length of 52 minutes each.
Each film focuses on a single person on Death Row and their crimes - with the exception of Garcia/Rivas who were involved in the same prison break and the subsequent murder of a police officer. The only other voices in these films are of prosecutors, law enforcement officers, co-defendants, or attorneys to "walk" us through the cases. The director who conducts the conversations remains invisible behind the camera.

Director's Statement


I am not an advocate of the death penalty. I do not even have an argument, I only have a story, the history of the barbarism of Nazi Germany.
There were thousands and thousands of cases of capital punishment; there was a systematic program of euthanasia, and on top of it the industrialized extermination of six million Jews in a genocide that has no precedence in human history.
The argument that innocent men and women have been executed is, in my opinion, only a secondary one. A State should not be allowed - under any circumstance - to execute anyone for any reason.
As a guest in the United States, and being German, I respectfully disagree with the practice of capital punishment. I would be the last one to tell the American people how to conduct their criminal justice.

Guilt or Innocence


The Death Row films are not in the business of establishing guilt or innocence. For this, there are courts of law. The films are not an apology for the committed crimes either.
It is also absolutely clear that the crimes of the persons in the films are monstrous, but the perpetrators are not monsters. They are human. For this reason, they are treated with respect. In the discourse they are addressed formally with Mr. or Mrs. and their full name. Although the director engaged in conversation is not visible, he always wears a formal suit.
For me, the director, the balance, the right tone, in the dialogues is essential: there is no activist's anger from my side, although my position is clear; there is no false sentimentality; there is no commiseration; there is no chumminess; but there is a sense of solidarity with the inmates concerning their appeals and legal battles in order to have their execution delayed or transformed into a life sentence. And, above all, there is a strong sense that these individuals are human beings.

Crew & Production


Written and Directed by
WERNER HERZOG

Produced by
ERIK NELSON

Director of Photography
PETER ZEITLINGER

Picture and Music Edited by
JOE BINI

Music Composed by
MARK DEGLI ANTONI

Executive Producer
DAVE HARDING

Executive Producers
for Investigation Discovery
HENRY SCHLEIFF
SARA KOZAK

Executive Producers
for Spring Films and Werner Herzog Film
ANDRE SINGER
LUCKI STIPETIC

Executive Producer for Skellig Rock
NICK RASLAN

Co-Producer
AMY BRIAMONTE

Coordinating Producer
ROBERT ERICKSON

Additional Camera
DON FRIDEL
JERRY HATTAN
KEVIN O’BRIEN
DAVE ROBERSON
JAKE WILGANOWSKI

Production Sound
ERIC SPITZER
JEFF DUNCAN
RANDY FOSTER
MICHAEL LILE
AL MCGUIRE
STEVE OSMON

Assistant Camera
ERIK SOELLNER

Production Assistant
HARRY SCHLEIFF

Research & Clearance
DIEU PHAM
ANDREA ANDERSON
NATE CALLOWAY

Supervising Producer, Post Production
RANDALL BOYD

Assistant Editor
ALEX BUSHE

Post Production Coordinator
BERNIE LEINFELDER

Music Performed By
SEBASTIAN STEINBERG - guitars, contra bass
LISA GERMANO - violins
DAVID BYRNE - guitar
PETER BECK - winds
COLIN STEVENS - instrument design
MARK DEGLI ANTONI - keyboards, percussion

Post Production Mixer
MIKE KLINGER
Tree Falls Post

Colorist
SHERI EISENBERG
Colorworks

Business Affairs
CYNTHIA SHAPIRO

Accounting
BILL HAYES
HONG LA

Footage provided by
KFDA-News Channel 10
Pampa News

Special Thanks
Texas Department Of Criminal Justice
Michelle Lyons
Jason Clark

Commissioning Executives for Channel 4
DAVID GLOVER
ANNA MIRALIS

Produced by
CREATIVE DIFFERENCES and SKELLIG ROCK
for INVESTIGATION DISCOVERY

In Association with
SPRING FILMS Ltd.
and
WERNER HERZOG FILM GmbH

We are sorry, but this film is not available at this shop

Part II Portraits on


  • Douglas Feldman (executed July 31, 2013)

  • Robert Fratta

  • Blaine Milam

  • Darlie Routier

Synopsis to Death Row II



Blaine Milam (the yougest Death Row inmate in Texas) and his girlfriend Jesseca Carson together killed her 13 month old daughter in an attempt to remove demons from the child during an exorcism. The troubling question is: who is the Devil?

Robert Fratta hired two hitmen to kill his wife who was about to divorce him. Both fellow Death Row inmates and guards describe him as the most frightening person they have ever seen.

Darlie Routier stabbed her two young sons to death, and was found with a knife wound on her throat, claiming an intruder had attacked her. Apparently, her boys had become an obstacle to continue her lifestyle of parties and beauty parlors.

Douglas Feldman fatally shot a man driving an 18-wheel truck. Witnesses observed Feldman ride up beside the truck on a motorcycle and fire multiple shots into the cab of the truck. Reports indicate that a total of 12 shots were fired into the truck resulting in the death of the driver. Approximately 30 minutes later, in Dallas, Texas, Feldman rode up beside a parked 18-wheel truck and fatally shot another man. Four shots were fired on this occasion, resulting in the death of the victim.

On August 23, 1998, approximately nine shots were fired into the Central Volkswagen Dealership in Richardson. On September 5, 1998, a victim received two gunshot wounds in the parking lot of a restaurant in Dallas, Texas. Ballistics reports verified that all of the attacks were performed by the gun that Feldman possessed.

Crew & Production


Produced by
Creative Differences
and
Skellig Rock

In association
with
Werner Herzog Film

Written and Directed by
WERNER HERZOG

Produced by
ERIK NELSON

Edited by
MARCO CAPALBO

Music Composed by
MARK DEGLI ANTONI

Executive Producer
DAVE HARDING

Associate Producer
THERESA SCHWARTZMAN

Field Producers
HARRY SCHLIEFF
ROBERT ERICKSON

Production Manager
COLIN HATTON

Camera
DAVE ROBERSON

Production Sound
STEVE OSMON

Supervising Producer, Post Production
RANDALL BOYD

Assistant Editor
ADARSH KAUSHAL

Music Performed By
SEBASTIAN STEINBERG – guitar, contrabass
LISA GERMANO – violins
DAVID BYRNE – guitar
PETER BECK – winds
COLIN STEVENS – instrument design
MARK DEGLI ANTONI – keyboards, percussion

Post Production Mixer
MIKE KLINGER
Tree Falls Post

Colorist
SHANE ROSS

Business Affairs
CYNTHIA SHAPIRO

Assistant to the Producers
LAURA DEWITT

Production Accounting
HONG LA

Creative Differences
Supervising Producer
AMY BRIAMONTE

Werner Herzog Film
Executive Producer
LUCKI STIPETIC

For Discovery
Production Managers
MARC LINMORE
RENEL HOLTON

Associate Producer
PAUL YANNES

Executive Producers
for Investigation Discovery
HENRY SCHLEIFF
SARA KOZAK

General Manager
KEVIN BENNETT

President and General Manager
HENRY SCHLEIFF

Produced by

CREATIVE DIFFERENCES PRODUCTIONS
and SKELLIG ROCK PRODUCTIONS
for INVESTIGATION DISCOVERY



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Photogallery to this film
 © by Werner Herzog Film   © by Werner Herzog Film   © by Werner Herzog Film   © by Werner Herzog Film   © by Werner Herzog Film   © by Werner Herzog Film 
 © by Werner Herzog Film 

Screener


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film


Screener available upon request: Please contact Werner Herzog Film