The Thin Blue Line

The Thin Blue Line Image
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 15 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A documentary which argues that Randall Harris was wrongly convicted of the murder of Dallas police officer Robert Wood by corrupt system of justice.

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. USA Today
    Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    100
    The most provocative miscarried-justice movie ever. [26 Aug 1988]
  2. Christian Science Monitor
    Reviewed by: David Sterritt
    100
    A fact-filled study that's also a full-fledged work of cinema art. [2 Sept 1988]
  3. 100
    More like a waking nightmare than a docudrama. A true story of murder and justice evidently miscarried, wrapped in the fictional haze of a surrealistic whodunit, it will leave you in a trance for days. [2 Sept 1988]
  4. San Francisco Chronicle
    Reviewed by: Judy Stone
    75
    At first I was irritated by what I felt were the unnecessary repetitions, but the film's final effect - for all its laughs - is a shocking reminder, as Adams says with resignation, that the lady who holds the scales of justice is blindfolded. [21 Mar 1988]
  5. Actually a moody horror story disguised as a documentary, designed to make the viewer feel how arbitrary and fragile the world of law and society really is.
  6. Los Angeles Times
    Reviewed by: Kevin Thomas
    70
    Morris pulls off a genuine shocker to cap his film, but his method exacts its price. It takes fully a third of the film's 109 minutes to become involved in it, thanks to Morris' deadpan tone and the initially jarring effect of his intercutting between straightforward talking heads and his B-movie reenactment of the crime. [2 Sept 1988]
  7. Chicago Tribune
    Reviewed by: Dave Kehr
    50
    It is an intriguing subject, though so far all that Morris has brought to it is a combination of the morbid and the cruel; he needs to develop some sympathy, too. [16 Sept 1988]

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 4
  3. Negative: 1 out of 4
  1. KeilS.
    Dec 7, 2005
    10
    This is investigative filmmaking at its finest. Errol Morris has crafted nothing less than an American classic. Forgive the hyperbole, but This is investigative filmmaking at its finest. Errol Morris has crafted nothing less than an American classic. Forgive the hyperbole, but it's honestly justified in this particular case. See this one as soon as possible. Expand
  2. Jan 23, 2016
    9
    It's a thrilling and compassionate, and objective tale of justice gone wrong. An in-depth look at the wrongful convictions which persist inIt's a thrilling and compassionate, and objective tale of justice gone wrong. An in-depth look at the wrongful convictions which persist in our legal system, and how the facts are often right in front of us for us to witness, but sometimes no one wants to look at them. It's gripping, and it's real journalistic filmmaking at its finest. Expand

See all 4 User Reviews

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