A Nightmare In Las Cruces (2011)
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Audience Reviews for A Nightmare In Las Cruces
The documentary begins in pitch black with the chilling 911 call made by 12 year old Melissa Repass, conscious after being shot five times. As she counts the bodies on the floor for the dispatcher, three of them children, you realize the murders at the Las Cruces Bowl in New Mexico are truly a nightmare. Minutes before the call, two men stole money from the safe and then shot seven people, execution style in their heads; the youngest of the victims, two year old Valerie Teran, who later died at the hospital. Miraculously, two others survived, Stephanie Senac and Ida Holguin. The cold-blooded killers have never been found. The film includes interviews with detectives, the 911 dispatcher who took Melissa's call, the survivors, and the dead victims' families that will have grown men weeping. Midway, there is an attempt at detective work by questioning the owner of the bowling alley, Ronald Senac, who was out of town during the incident. It's a notable effort but the interviewer often stumbles over the questions - slightly annoying. A completely unnecessary part of the film is a short blurb of the director, Charlie Minn, and crew, which has some people questioning his motives. At an hour and 43 minutes, the film stretches on an hour too long. [b]A Nightmare in Las Cruces[/b] packs its punch in the first half hour. About mid-point, it starts losing steam and you can sense the desperate attempts to keep the filler going with questions aimed at evoking waterworks, at which point you're hopeful that the provocation ends soon. How long do these poor people need to be tortured? And are the questions being asked bringing anyone any closer to catching the monsters who looked a two year old baby in the eyes and then shot her in the forehead? If you watch investigative shows like [b]Dateline[/b] and [b]48 Hours[/b], you'll like this documentary. It's an emotional roller coaster ride and, ultimately, there is no closure for the audience or the victims and victims' families. It's very depressing. [url="http://rottentomatoes.com/member/scarletheels"]Rotten Tomatoes Profile[/url] / [url="http://scarletheels.com/archives/category/moviestv/reviews_movies"]My Movie Reviews[/url]
I was totally unaware of this horrific incident that took place more than 20 years ago in Las Cruces before I came across this documentary. I found it appealing since it was described as one of the most gruesome (and unsolved) crimes the city had ever faced. While I obviously have sympathy for those who lost their lives or their near and dear ones in this massacre, I can't help but doubt the intentions of the documentary. The repetition of certain footage time and again was not only irritable but also unnecessary IMHO (and some might even find it painful to sit through). Besides, I can't understand why those who got past this tragedy (like Melissia Repass who is in tears throughout the documentary) chose to participate in this documentary. The participation of the concerned detectives wouldn't have been so surprising. Certain questions asked during the interview of various people are so silly (and dramatic, like the ones we often get to watch in movies) that it makes it all the more difficult to accept the director's claim that the movie was made with the intention of catching the killers at large till date!!! In short, this 100+ minutes long documentary deserves a skip because of its length as well as quality/material (just like this review by me).
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