Love Lived on Death Row | Chicago Reader

Love Lived on Death Row

As the title suggests, this video documentary about Elias Syriani, a North Carolina man who stabbed his wife to death in 1990, and his four children, who forgave him years later and appealed his death sentence, has all the makings of a real-life soap opera. Yet despite its force as a polemic against capital punishment, and for all the public displays of emotion, I came away feeling that parts of this potent story weren't being told. Syriani, a devout Catholic from Jordan, isn't among the storytellers, so his emotional problems and religious awakening are left to others to explain (or not). And on two occasions video maker Linda Booker employs piano music when one daughter starts to cry, which suggests she isn't sure when or how to let the story speak for itself. 83 min.

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