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Reckless Indifference (2000)

Director(s): William Gazecki

Theatrical Release: 2000

Cast: Patrick Sullivan, Jill Lansing, Robert Derham, Jim Farris Sr, Dick Detrich, Alan M. Dershowitz

Genre(s): Documentary, crime, biography, culture, Dean's List

Countries: USA


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Running Time: 94m.

Mike McLoren was a teenager living in a California suburb who sometimes sold marijuana out of a shack he called his "clubhouse," while his close friend Jimmy Farris acted as his bodyguard when the boys threw parties. One hot summer afternoon in 1995, McLoren and Farris were hanging out at the clubhouse when a group of kids they knew from school showed up, including Tony Miliotti, Jason Holland, and his brother Micah Holland. A long session of beer-drinking followed, and in an incident no one involved remembers with much clarity, a fight broke out that left Farris dead and McLoren in serious condition after someone pulled a knife. McLoren later told police that Miliotti and the Holland brothers were responsible for the attack. Farris' father was an officer with the Los Angeles Police Department, and the local media gave the case extensive coverage. Miliotti and the Hollands soon found themselves aggressively prosecuted by the Los Angeles district attorney's office who, along with the L.A.P.D., was determined to put the three teenagers in prison for life. They succeeded, though many regarded the sentences as out of proportion to the nature of the crime, and it was widely believed that the D.A.. was less interested in justice than in winning a well-publicized case. Documentary filmmaker William Gazecki examines this case in the documentary Reckless Indifference, which takes a close look at the D.A.'s handling of the case and the use of a controversial California statute that mandates life imprisonment for those who commit murder during the commission of another felony. Gazecki previously directed the Oscar-nominated feature Waco: The Rules Of Engagement. (allmovie.com)
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