“Our Godfather” tells the story of Tommaso Buscetta, the Sicilian Mafia informant whose testimony led to more than 400 convictions

“Our Godfather” tells the story of Tommaso Buscetta, the Sicilian Mafia informant whose testimony led to more than 400 convictions

Source:  The Hollywood Reporter

The story of Sicilian Mafia informant Tommaso Buscetta is compellingly told in “Our Godfather,” directed by Mark Franchetti and Andrew Meier, that recently received its world premiere at Toronto’s Hot Docs festival.

Relating the story of Buscetta, the highest-ranking Sicilian Mafia figure ever to break the code of silence known as omertà, with the gripping tension and fast pacing of a first-rate thriller, “Our Godfather” will prove fascinating for anyone interested in organized crime.  And as the films with a title similar to this one demonstrated several decades ago, those numbers are large.

Buscetta’s story is also being dramatized in Marco Bellocchio’s upcoming film “The Traitor,” which premieres at the Cannes Film Festival.

It’s the small, resonant details that make “Our Godfather” more than simply a true-crime tale but also a moving portrait of a man who was both a stone-cold killer and a tragic figure who never got over his guilt for what his criminal lifestyle had done to his family.  It’s Shakespearean tragedy, mafioso style.

Read the story at The Hollywood Reporter.

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HBO prepping docuseries on self-help group tied to sex trafficking and racketeering

HBO prepping docuseries on self-help group tied to sex trafficking and racketeering

Source:  NBC News

An HBO documentary series currently in production will take a “deep, nuanced look” at NXIVM, the upstate New York self-help group that prosecutors say doubled as a secret sex cult.

The series will follow a group of members who joined the self-improvement organization only to later learn, they said, that it recruited women through empowerment workshops and held them hostage as sex slaves for Keith Raniere, who co-founded the group in 1998 with Nancy Salzman.

The docuseries promises to provide an inside look at the ongoing federal investigation, which has led to the indictment of six leading figures on charges ranging from racketeering to sex trafficking and child pornography.

Among those arrested were “Smallville” actress Allison Mack, who has since pleaded guilty, and Seagram’s liquor heiress, Claire Bronfman.

Read the story at NBC News.

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Netflix’s “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann” revisits one of the biggest missing child cases in history

Netflix’s “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann” revisits one of the biggest missing child cases in history

Source:  Digital Spy

Despite only arriving on Netflix on Friday, the eight-hour series, “The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann,” has already proven controversial – by and large because of what Madeleine’s parents, Kate and Gerry McCann, have had to say about it.

The true crime docuseries takes an in-depth look into the 2007 disappearance of three-year-old Madeleine McCann, who vanished from a holiday resort in Praia da Luz, Portugal.

She has since become the most famous missing child in the world, following years of extensive searches, unverified sightings, investigations, and widespread media coverage.

Kate and Gerry McCann refused to take part in the project and believe the docuseries could potentially hinder the ongoing search for their missing daughter.

“The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann” is available now on Netflix.

Read the story at Digital Spy.

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HBO doc “I Love You, Now Die” spotlights infamous texting suicide case

HBO doc “I Love You, Now Die” spotlights infamous texting suicide case

Source:  Deadline

HBO has released the first trailer for their upcoming true-crime documentary, “I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth vs. Michelle Carter,” and although there’s sparse footage, it’s chilling.

Directed by Erin Lee Carr (“Mommy Dead and Dearest”), the two-part documentary, which will debut at SXSW on March 9, dives deep into the texting suicide case that riveted the nation

Michelle Carter sent texts urging her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to commit suicide.  Carter, who was 17 years old at the time, was indicted as an adult.

The documentary raises difficult questions about technology, mental health, and whether or not a teenager can be held responsible for the suicide of another.

“I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth vs. Michelle Carter” will premiere this summer on HBO.

Read the story at Deadline.

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HBO’s “The Case Against Adnan Syed” picks up where the “Serial” podcast left off

HBO’s “The Case Against Adnan Syed” picks up where the “Serial” podcast left off

Source:  PEOPLE

More than 170 million people downloaded the first season of NPR’s popular true-crime podcast “Serial,” spawning widespread scrutiny over the prosecution and conviction of Adnan Syed.

Syed was sentenced in 2000 to life in prison for the 1999 kidnapping and murder of his 18-year-old Baltimore high school classmate and ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

Now, as Syed remains behind bars despite the fact that a court overturned his conviction, HBO is unveiling “The Case Against Adnan Syed,”  a new four-part documentary series about the controversial trial.

“The Case Against Adnan Syed” premieres March 10 on HBO.

Read the story at PEOPLE.

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“Abducted in Plain Sight” has to be seen to be believed

“Abducted in Plain Sight” has to be seen to be believed

Source:  Rolling Stone

True crime documentary, “Abducted in Plain Sight,” which recently became available on Netflix, initially seems to be a nightmarish but otherwise unremarkable suburban kidnapping story.

Set in the 1970s, Robert and Mary Ann Broberg and their three young daughters, Jan, Karen, and Susan, are a nice Mormon family from Pocatello, Idaho, who quickly become close pals with their new neighbor, Robert Berchtold and his wife and kids.

So close that the Broberg girls come to view Berchtold, known as “B,” like a second father, especially middle daughter Jan.

Somewhat predictably, the documentary soon reveals that in 1974, two years after befriending the Brobergs, Berchtold picked up 12-year-old Jan from school and disappeared with her for five weeks.

Not so predictable is the eventual revelation that, in 1976, Berchtold abducted Jan for a second time.

This stranger-than-fiction true story only gets more outrageous, dumbfounding, and utterly unpredictable from there.

Watch “Abducted in Plain Sight” on Netflix. 

Read the story at Rolling Stone.

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