The gripping new HBO documentary Crazy, Not Insane gets deep inside the mind of the serial killer later this month on Fox Showcase.
Directed and produced by Academy Award®-winner Alex Gibney (The Inventor: Out For Blood in Silicon Valley), Crazy, Not Insane follows psychiatrist Dr. Dorothy Otnow Lewis, who has dedicated her career to looking beyond the grisly details of homicides and into the hearts and minds of the killers themselves.
An official selection of the 2020 Venice International Film Festival, the documentary profiles Dr. Lewis and her research, includes videotaped death row interviews, and examines the formative experiences and neurological dysfunction of such infamous murderers as Arthur Shawcross and Ted Bundy, challenging the very notion of evil and proposing that murderers are made not born. Other high-profile convicted murderers and death row inmates assessed by Dr. Lewis include Mark David Chapman, David Wilson, Marie Moore and Joseph Paul Franklin.
A well-respected psychiatrist and author, Dr. Lewis began her career working with children. Her exposure to the testimony of childhood abuse led her to explore the way that trauma in childhood – often coupled with some neurological damage – can sow the seeds of murderous impulses in adults.
Among Dr. Lewis’s most well-known cases is Arthur Shawcross, who was convicted in 1991 for the murder of eleven women. While Lewis’s videotaped exchanges with Shawcross show him inhabiting the alters of his vengeful mother and a 13th century cannibal, Shawcross was found sane and guilty in a trial by jury. Lewis was also one of the last people to interview Ted Bundy just before his execution. In an audiotape featured in the film, Bundy was unusually candid with the psychiatrist, revealing new details that upend the conventional wisdom about him.
Gibney uses an eclectic mix of cinema verité, videotapes of psychiatric evaluations, hand-drawn animation and home movies in order to explore the complexities of the human mind. Lewis’ literary voice is read by actress Laura Dern (Big Little Lies) to bring further insight into Lewis’ career and her cases through her writings.
Wednesday, November 25 at 8.30pm AEDT, available to watch on FOX SHOWCASE