Journal Article

The courtroom and the closet in <i>The Thin Blue Line</i> and <i>Capturing the Friedmans</i>

Zoë Druick

in Screen

Published on behalf of University of Glasgow

Volume 49, issue 4, pages 440-449
Published in print January 2008 | ISSN: 0036-9543
Published online January 2008 | e-ISSN: 1460-2474 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/screen/hjn054
The courtroom and the closet in The Thin Blue Line and Capturing the Friedmans

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In this essay, I argue that The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris, 1988) and Capturing the Friedmans (Andrew Jarecki, 2003) are compelling explorations of both the knowledge – and the ignorance – produced by the existence of what Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick calls ‘the epistemology of the closet’ (1990), the structuring principle at the heart of homophobic culture. Ostensibly focused on wrongful conviction, the films both use a proliferation of signification in place of clear analysis of the queer sexuality at the root of their stories. This textual excess complicates the documentary tradition with which the films nevertheless engage.

Journal Article.  5128 words. 

Subjects: Film ; Television

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