Until sufficiently proven, a lot of quotation marks are required to unpack Eric Stacey’s “true-crime” dramatization of the “faked” 2013 murder-suicide of 9-11 conspiracy theorist Marshall Phillips and his teenage kids, “incorrectly” reported by “corrupt” police and the “misled” media.
Gracelessly shot and cruddily lit, this exposition-heavy, no-budget docudrama lionizes and martyrs Phillips (Randall Paul), a former airline pilot and finger-pointing author who truthers believe was silenced in a CIA black-ops hit.
The official report, on the other hand, points to Phillips’s crippling debt, impending divorce, mental instability (a psychiatric diagnosis grounded him as a pilot years earlier), and stone-cold forensic evidence, so where’s the smoking gun?
In Stacey’s case, it’s in having his low-rent cast — especially Dennis Fitzpatrick’s dubious investigative journalist — smugly regurgitate shaky case details as if playing petulant high-schoolers (a never-used door was found unlocked; a right-handed man delivered a bullet to his own left temple!). Even more bone-headed are the carelessly superimposed clips of controversial radio host Alex Jones and intelligence muckraker Wayne Madsen.
Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean your speculations are sound, your writing and filmmaking skills are passable, or that you’re preaching to anyone but the fearfully converted.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 9, 2014