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Into the Abyss

HD   PG-13 Closed Captioning

Werner Herzog

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About the Movie

In his fascinating exploration of a triple homicide case in Conroe, Texas, master filmmaker Werner Herzog (Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Grizzly Man) probes the human psyche to explore why people kill—and why a state kills. In intimate conversations with those involved, including 28-year-old death row inmate Michael Perry (scheduled to die within eight days of appearing on-screen), Herzog achieves what he describes as “a gaze into the abyss of the human soul.” Herzog’s inquiries also extend to the families of the victims and perpetrators as well as a state executioner and pastor who’ve been with death row prisoners as they’ve taken their final breaths. As he’s so often done before, Herzog’s investigation unveils layers of humanity, making an enlightening trip out of ominous territory.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 109
  • Fresh: 100
  • Rotten: 9
  • Average Rating: 7.7/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: Herzog's investigation may not work as an anti-death-penalty editorial, but its findings are undeniably profound. – Peter Debruge, Variety, Nov 18, 2011

Fresh: A disquieting, heartbreaking look at American crime and punishment. – Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter, Nov 18, 2011

Fresh: An inquiry into fundamental moral, philosophical, and religious issues, and an examination of humankind's capacity for violence - individual and institutional. – Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer, Nov 17, 2011

Fresh: The abyss here isn't capital punishment, the ostensible subject of the film; it's the seemingly unending capacity for causing and enduring pointless misery that humans seem to have. – Tom Long, Detroit News, Nov 18, 2011

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

A great capital punishment commentary

Disturbing and wonderful. Herzog is a master.

Into The Abyss

This movie was pretty boring. The film maker is a German that asks really dumb questions and sounds silly. There was so much more they could have done with this, considering the access they had. Would not suggest.

Intense, brilliant

Disturbing, painful to watch, but Herzog at his inquisitive and revealing best. If you know his work, you'll appreciate this study of the death penalty in the US.

Into the Abyss
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  • $12.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2011

Customer Ratings