6 days til death and the lives of two brothers
KerrLines | Baltimore,MD | 04/03/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With six days to go before he is sentenced to be executed,two-time murderer Gary Gilmore and his littlest brother,Mikal,meet for the first time in twenty two years.In these six days, meeting in a claustrophic prison,these two brothers have major epiphanies about who they are,where they have come from and where each is destined to go in life.The book,SHOT IN THE HEART by Mikal Gilmore is quite condensed,but compellingly brought to the screen by famed and very diverse director Agnieszka Holland (EUROPA EUROPA,THE SECRET GARDEN,COPYING BEETHOVEN,TO KILL A PRIEST etc).The camera stares into the very souls of these two brothers as they explore their shared family legacy that has produced nothing but death and heartache.Historically accurate and very well done from HBO."
Moody, Absorbing Adaptation Of A Great Book
R. W. Rasband | Heber City, UT | 07/26/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is HBO's movie version of director Agnieszka Holland's adaptation of Mikal Gilmore's book "Shot In the Heart". It is produced by Barry Levinson and Tom Fontana, the guys behind the late, great TV series "Homicide" and "Oz", and the end credits say the film was shot mostly in Baltimore, the locale of "Homicide" (there are some exterior shots of Salt Lake, including Temple Square; and Provo canyon.) Giovanni Ribisi plays Mikal Gilmore and Elias Koteas is Gary Gilmore (a far cry from his kind-hearted soldier in the movie "The Thin Red Line.") The playwright Sam Shepard portrays Frank Gilmore, Sr. and Amy Madigan is Bessie Gilmore. The film lacks the epic, time- and space-spanning quality of Mikal's book. It's more an intense chamber piece; I can easily envision a stage version. It's very reminiscent of an episode of "Homicide"; it has the same dark intensity. It uses Mikal's scary tales of rural Utah Mormon mythology: blood atonement, three Nephites (pronounced here "Neff-ites") and ghosts. We see things from Mikal's perspective, so it's possible to see these elements as part of a depiction of a disturbed family's collective world-view. We choose to see what we want to see, and the bloody ethos depicted here is real, but it's only a partial glimpse of the local heritage. It's a gripping film, but for LDS viewers, caveat emptor."