See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders (DVD)

See No Evil DVD (click for larger image)Reviewed by Kryten Syxx

Starring Maxine Peak, Sean Harris, Michael McNulty, Joanne Froggatt and George Costigan

Directed by Christopher Menaul

Distributed by MPI Home Video

Ian Brady and Myra Hindley will forever be damned by the people of England. The couple raped/murdered three children and one teenager. Ian himself savagely murdered a second teen with a hatchet as part of a strange initiation to lure in his girlfriend’s brother-in-law into the killing group. That last act didn’t exactly work out as Brady and Hindley had expected, as it set in motion the events that would lead to discovery of England’s most talked about and disturbing murder trial.

See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders isn’t exactly what you’d expect out of a true crime film. The focus throughout the movie is never on Ian Brady and Myra Hindley, but on Myra’s sister Maureen and brother-in-law David and how the actions of the guilty party managed to destroy the lives of those who were innocent. Well, at least Maureen was perfectly clear of charges, it was David’s stupidity that brought them all into this mess.

See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders DVD (click for larger image)David had no job and no way to pay the rent. With a new baby on the way, wouldn’t you do whatever it took to keep your loved ones safe and warm? OK, “whatever” is a bit to broad of a term since being part of a murder plan is probably out of the question for most sane people. Unfortunately, David didn’t know that Ian and Myra’s plan to help him included the murder of a young man.

This is what kicked off the domino effect that lead to the discovery of the duos previous unthinkable murders. After seeing Ian slaughter the innocent boy, David quickly forgets all about his debts and runs off to tell the police. As one can expect, the cops aren’t exactly sure just how detached from the whole act David and his wife really are. So starts the investigation.

Not long after the quest for answers begin do the inspectors find that this isn’t Ian and Myra’s first mingle with taking the lives of other people. Pornographic photographs of a missing girl are found in the couples belongings along with a tape recording of the rape. Quickly it unfolds that the couple are responsible for two other children’s deaths and another teen. Sadly, not all of the bodies were recovered as one child’s remains are still somewhere out on the moors.

Brady and Hindley are found guilty, though the general public still feel that David is still the third Moor Murderer. This census last for years, leading to his marriage to Maureen to dissolve. It was one very stupid mistake that would leave ripples in the pond for decades…

See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders DVD (click for larger image)Now that I’ve brought you up to speed on the events behind See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders, let’s take a look at the dramatization itself.

See No Evil is a pretty slow paced film that takes its time introducing us to each player. All the roles are played out beautifully, giving the movie a sense of reality without all the glamour and glitz of many Hollywood “real life” recreations. It’s plain to see that Ian and Myra are unstable people, yet this isn’t brought about in any sort of comical villain sort of way with grand plots and speeches. Some people are just sick and enjoy doing sick things. There are no excuses made here and only at the very end do we consider that one of them should have a chance at redemption.

The filmmakers are also to be applauded for not trying to push the envelope by showing the murders of children or the unthinkable tortures they had to endure prior to death. This kind of gore would not have helped move the story along in the slightest and the only time it was effect was when Ian proved to David he was a killer. Even that scene was lax on violence and visual gore. We got lots of blood here, but nothing too gruesome. Odd for a jaded horor fan to say such a thing, but …

See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders DVD (click for larger image)All in all, See No Evil shows us what matters in regards to the Moors Murders. Time isn’t wasted in areas that don’t contribute to character development and by the end of the 2+ hour feature it is easy to feel conflicted about where a person should stand in regards to love and family. Would you talk to your brother or sister again if they were connected to such horrific events? Are they worthy of redemption?

What this DVD was worthy of was at least one special feature. It really irks me to say that there are none. Zero. Nada. Not one special feature is printed on the disc. How is this even possible? With such a large amount of media regarding the case there should at least have been an image gallery with pics from the trial or news paper clippings. Sigh.

With the exception of the lack of extras, anyone who is a fan of true crime dramas should pick up See No Evil: The Story of the Moors Murders. While it may not please gorehounds, the story itself and the effects the trial had on others is more effective than 100 buckets of blood and guts.

4 1/2 out of 5

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Mike Phalin

Mike Phalin is a contributing writer, reality television star and engineer.