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Rated NR · 84 minutes · 2009
This disturbing true-crime documentary takes its name from a local bogeyman that video makers Joshua Zeman and Barbara Brancaccio were warned about when they were growing up on Staten Island. Only later did they discover the factual basis for this urban legend: between 1971 and 1987, five children vanished from the community, all of them suffering from some sort of disability. According to the video, the key to this mystery is Andre Rand, once a staffer at the horrific Willowbrook State School for retarded children; though he insists he’s innocent, he’s been convicted on circumstantial evidence of having kidnapped two of the missing children, and a minister who briefly sheltered Rand recalls him saying that “people that had mental handicaps shouldn’t be alive.” Though Rand now seems likely to die in prison, interviews with the parents expose that as cold comfort. "You never get closure," remarks one. "That’s just a bullshit word."


See our full review: The Reader's Guide to the Chicago International Film Festival: Week Two

The Reader's Guide to the Chicago International Film Festival: Week Two

New reviews of selected films screening October 16-22 »

The Reader's Guide to the 45th Chicago International Film Festival: Week One

The Reader's Guide to the 45th Chicago International Film Festival: Week One

Selected films making their Chicago premieres at the festival through Thursday, October 15 »

Director: Barbara Brancaccio and Joshua Zeman
Producer: Barbara Brancaccio, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, Zachary Mortensen and Joshua Zeman

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