Granted unusual access to a suspected murderer’s lawyers, home and immediate family, de Lestrade’s cameras capture the defense team as it considers its strategic options. “The staircase” is an engrossing look at contemporary American justice that features more twists than a legal bestseller.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
Without any reasonable doubt this is a very engaging piece of courtroom drama, in the likes of Lestrade's previous Murder On Sunday Morning, Paradise Lost, Pressumed Guilty and courtroom fiction film alike. Reading on and you will find important ommisions which were important in the actual court room. You spend six hours watching what you think is the case as it was primarily presented, when in reality it is not.
It doesn't matter what your armchair psychology degree says (it certainly seems that a lot of people know who did what just by looking at people, good on them). As the fact that the series DO omit some of the evidence discussion. This series is not about that. It is about exposing the ridiculousness of the American justice system and over-reliance on one person's opinions. In this, The Staircase succeeds, I think.
It's retarded to let your life in the hands of 12 people with no more credentials than to be representative of bigotry in a conservative community. By the 3rd episode, I didn't really care if he commit the crime, but how far could the prosecution team and the media exploit the fact that Peterson was having affairs with other men. Michael biggest crime was to be a little bit too smart for Durham.
A minor masterpiece of true crime film-making due both to its arresting subject matter and its attention to the mundaneness of the trial. Its length and languid nature removes the glamour associated with cinema court room trials, and instead we see the arduous and occasionally boring elements which engulf everyone involved in the trial. Embodies true uncertainty as either verdict begins to feel like a tragedy.
I must admit that six hours was a little long. The series was unable to grasp my attention for the entire span of time. The time spent in the courtroom however was so intense... The real time presence really helped to build the tension towards the verdict. I was so excited to hear the outcome of this case!