10 Best Capital Punishment Movies

Thursday, February 24 by T. Cousin

This article will highlight the 10 best capital punishment movies that you should watch. Capital punishment is the execution of a person by the judicial process for an offense.

  1.  "Devil's Island" (1940). This capital punishment film is about a doctor who is sentenced to death. After saving the life of a treasonous fugitive, a man is sent to a prison camp to die by the guillotine, but he escapes and clears his name before his execution can be carried out. 
  2. "The Executioner's Song" (1982). This capital punishment movie is a biopic of convicted murderer Gary Gilmore. After receiving the death penalty; which at the time was by hanging or firing squad, Gary insists on being executed as soon as possible by firing squad.
  3. "I Want To Live" (1983). This capital punishment film was adapted from the true story of Barbara Graham. The movie is set in the 1950s, and follows Barbara through her trial for a crime that she plead innocent to, all the way to the day she died in the gas chamber.
  4. "Let Him Have It" (1991). This movie about capital punishment is set in 1952. The story follows the trial conviction, execution, and posthumous exoneration of a nineteen year old boy who was said to have shot and killed a policeman in cold blood.
  5. "Deadman Walking" (1995). This film about capital punishment was based on a true story. The plot follows a nun, who after becoming the spiritual advisor of an inmate on death row, tries to get him to confess to his crimes so that he can enter heaven after his execution.
  6. "Last Dance" (1996). This capital punishment film follows a woman on death row, and an unproven lawyer who tries to save her life. After ten years on death row, a woman offers little help to her lawyer, even after he finds inconsistencies in her case that may spare her life.
  7. "Return To Paradise" (1998). This capital punishment film is about an American who is sentenced to death in Malaysia. The story follows an activist who is tried as a drug dealer and sentenced to die in eight days, and the American lawyer who is trying to save his life.
  8. "A Letter From Death Row" (1998). This capital punishment film is also a psychological thriller. The story is about a death row inmate, who after being interviewed, leaves his interviewer wondering about his innocence when he tells her a story about his being framed.
  9. "The Green Mile" (1999). This capital punishment film is about a wrongful execution. After a man is sentenced to die for the murder of a little girl, the prison guards come to realize he is innocent of the crime, and was only trying to save the girl by way of his special gift.
  10. "The Life Of David Gale" (2003). This capital punishment film is also a mystery. The story follows a man who is found innocent of raping a woman, but a few years later, convicted and sentenced to death for her murder on very little evidence. 
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