10 Rillington Place (1971)

The recent murder case against Dr. Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia, has proved that abortion is still one of the most controversial subjects in modern society. This was not a doctor, this was a monster. Abortive procedures should not be judged by the horrors that went on in this man’s place of work, though, Pro Life campaigners are using the actions of this abhorrent man to further their cause, which, in this blogger’s opinion, is really classy. I don’t remember anyone protesting against clowns when John Wayne Gacy’s crimes were uncovered (though, there is a cause we could all get behind) …

A woman’s right to choose seems to come always come second to the life of the zygote, other people’s religious beliefs, ultra conservatism and a LOT of talk from repulsive white folk who don’t own vaginas at all.

Legitimate rape anyone?

As shocking as the Gosnell case is, before abortion was made legal these sort of cases were frighteningly commonplace, and those who were lucky enough to survive a back alley abortion, usually ended up scarred internally or infertile, not to mention left to deal with the psychological trauma something like that causes, alone. This is why abortion is legal, because whatever your views may be on the subject, contraception is never one hundred percent effective, and a woman should not be punished for her sexual choices if she is not ready, financially or emotionally to be a mother.

Even to this day women who make the choice (which let’s face it, is not an easy decision for anyone to come to terms with), not to proceed with a pregnancy, are made to feel like it is something to be ashamed of, which it sure as hell is not. The Gosnell case should remind us why abortion was made legal in the first place, not used as excuse to shame women who need to make a choice that they can live with, not you. It seems to me that there are far too many unwanted children out there, and it makes no sense to bring a life into this world, if you can’t guarantee a child the life that it deserves.

10 Rillington Place is the true story of John Christie who was the known murderer of eight women, though he is suspected of more. He managed to lure some of his victims, with a profession of a rudimentary medical knowledge, in order to perform a needed medical procedure, such as an illegal abortion, which sealed the fate of Beryl Evans , one of his more infamous victims. Before Christie was finally brought to justice, Beryl’s husband Timothy ( who had struggled with learning difficulties throughout his life, and with literacy skills that did not go beyond being able to write his own name), was wrongfully convicted and hung for their murders.

This is a true tale of horror , in that this is easily one of the most chilling films ever made. It has very little entertainment value though, for I cannot envision wanting to watch this film more than once, but it is hypnotic in its brutal reality, and utterly compelling until the very last. Richard ‘Jurassic Park’ Attenborough is a far cry from the kindly old gentleman persona that we know him best as, with his soft spoken voice and saucer like eyes, bringing Christie to life in a way that could never be replicated, and is in my opinion, to this day his best role. The poverty and desperate circumstances of the area these people lived in is palpable, making them vulnerable prey for a man who played on his weak and sickly reputation, to gain their trust. 10 Rillington Place is not for the faint hearted, as it has a way of bringing the true darkness of a notorious killer, right to the fore, and remains one of the most hauntingly powerful films I have seen to this day.

The Timothy Evans case is an excellent example of why capital punishment should never be reinstated in the UK, and why it should not have any place in modern society; as it bears many similarities to the hanging of Derek Bentley,and countless other miscarriages of justice, that were carried out in the name of the law. After all, it’s much more effective to pardon a live individual than a bag of bones.

This entry was posted in 70s horror, critique, fiction, film and media, horror, murder, opinion, pop culture, rant, Serial Killers, Seventies horror, True Crime, True Horror, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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