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  1. #16
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    I never really followed the case at the time although I had heard about it many years ago. I truly enjoyed the movie and have my own copy. Recently I got the "Director's Cut" which has many interviews with surviving principles.

    I have a question for anyone with an answer. Does anyone know of a fact that could be said to exclude ALA? I've labored long and hard to find something but can't come up with it. Many people believe that Graysmith made several factual mistakes which may or may not be true, but leaving that aside, I'm unable to find a way to exclude him.

  2. #17
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    hipmamajen is offline I love the friends I have gathered together on this thin raft...
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    That's an interesting question, Missouri Mule. I don't know, either.

  3. #18
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    Are there two different versions of this movie? I rented one last year and didn't think it was that great. I think Vince Vaughan played one of the lead detectives in that one. They never showed a character playing the Zodiac, just a voiceover.

    But then I saw The Zodiac dvd on the shelves at Hollywood Video last week, with Jake Gylenhaal on the cover. I don't remember him being in the version that I saw. Anyway, just wondering if there are different versions out there, because if so then I may rent the one that I haven't seen.

  4. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by LillyRush View Post
    Are there two different versions of this movie? I rented one last year and didn't think it was that great. I think Vince Vaughan played one of the lead detectives in that one. They never showed a character playing the Zodiac, just a voiceover.

    But then I saw The Zodiac dvd on the shelves at Hollywood Video last week, with Jake Gylenhaal on the cover. I don't remember him being in the version that I saw. Anyway, just wondering if there are different versions out there, because if so then I may rent the one that I haven't seen.
    yes, there is......the one with Gyllenhaal & Robt Downey Jr is the best one....imo

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by close_enough View Post
    yes, there is......the one with Gyllenhaal & Robt Downey Jr is the best one....imo
    Thanks, I didn't want to rent the same one. But maybe I'll check the Gylenhaal & Downey version out if it's better.

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by LillyRush View Post
    Are there two different versions of this movie? I rented one last year and didn't think it was that great. I think Vince Vaughan played one of the lead detectives in that one. They never showed a character playing the Zodiac, just a voiceover.

    But then I saw The Zodiac dvd on the shelves at Hollywood Video last week, with Jake Gylenhaal on the cover. I don't remember him being in the version that I saw. Anyway, just wondering if there are different versions out there, because if so then I may rent the one that I haven't seen.
    The earlier movie wasn't worth anything; it was trash. However the one that came out about a year ago is the one to see. Frankly, I think it is great. I would however recommend the recently released "Director's Cut" which has two disks; the latter having the interviews of the principles including two of the survivors. I had previously purchased the original (last year's) single disk version after renting it (I seldom buy movies but I developed an intense interest in this case) and then heard about the "Director's Cut" version a month or so ago and I purchased the two disk version over the internet. I use it to study for possible clues. I also have Graysmith's book coming to me that I got off eBay. But to restate, the very first movie was not worth seeing. The one last year with Robert Downey, Mark Ruffalo, Jake Gylenhaal and Anthony Edwards is a masterpiece in my opinion. I've watched it a half dozen times. Most movies aren't worth seeing the first time. The interplay among the officers strikes me so so very authentic it is worth seeing it for that reason alone. Edwards underplayed his role (as he should) but it is was delicious as he discusses whether he would ever eat sushi. It was great. I loved the movie.

  7. #22
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    Zodiac is a great movie....do you all think that the suspect was the Zodiac?

  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by kazzbar View Post
    Zodiac is a great movie....do you all think that the suspect was the Zodiac?
    I do. I have looked at the evidence available and today, as far as I am concerned, found the "smoking gun." Although there is no physical evidence linking Allen, there is a finite amount of circumstantial evidence that ought to be considered before calling it a lock. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck and looks like a duck, the chances are great that it's a duck.

    Anyone, and I many anyone, who claims that there is physical evidence that exonerates Allen is badly mistaken my view. There is no provable chain of custody of any alleged evidence linked to Zodiac such as DNA or fingerprints. If they claim there is, they do not understand what constitutes a chain of custody. Unfortunately too many have glibly pronounced that there is. That is demonstrably false. Absent that, there is no exonerative evidence existing.

    One of the problems I can speak to as a former 30 year investigator (not LE) is that it is possible to have too much information. I only recently began looking at this case. When I looked at everything, the mountain of circumstantial evidence is simply overwhelming. I was not a prosecutor but if I were, I would not hesitate to bring a murder one case and I am convinced the case would be winnable on the circumstantial evidence alone.
    Last edited by Missouri Mule; 02-14-2008 at 05:29 PM.

  9. #24
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    I saw the movie, then read the book, I was convinced the suspect in the book and movie was the killer. Too many things matched and the author was just meticulous in checking out details and following up leads.

  10. #25
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    I found the movie riveting. We began watching it in the evening and I was concerned about the content disturbing my sleep. I dislike slasher horror movies. This was well done, great casting, just great! I loved it.


  11. #26
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    A comment

    I happened to view a discussion of this case last night. Something was said at the time but the truth didn't really hit me until today but I think it is very close to the truth. I would wish to add to what was said.

    While many of us have concluded who the Zodiac was, what few have considered is that there is a cottage industry devoted to pursuing this one case indefinitely. There are those who do NOT wish to see this case solved. It is not in their financial interest for the case to end. It is highly unlikely that there will be a resolution any more than Jack the Ripper, the Black Dahlia case or more recently, the JFK murder. (Oswald did it, in my view.)

    There will be those promoting conspiracy and controversy over Zodiac. As in so many cases, the operating assumption should be to follow the money. This case is, in my opinion, little different. That is something that I had never considered. How naive I was.

  12. #27
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    Zodiac and the letters which are still undeciphered

    Quote Originally Posted by Missouri Mule View Post
    I do. I have looked at the evidence available and today, as far as I am concerned, found the "smoking gun." Although there is no physical evidence linking Allen, there is a finite amount of circumstantial evidence that ought to be considered before calling it a lock. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck and looks like a duck, the chances are great that it's a duck.

    Anyone, and I many anyone, who claims that there is physical evidence that exonerates Allen is badly mistaken my view. There is no provable chain of custody of any alleged evidence. If they claim there is, they do not understand what constitutes a chain of custody. Unfortunately too many have glibly pronounced that there is. That is demonstrably false. Absent that, there is no exonerative evidence existing.

    One of the problems I can speak to as a former 30 year investigator (not LE) is that it is possible to have too much information. I only recently began looking at this case. When I looked at everything, the mountain of circumstantial evidence is simply overwhelming. I was not a prosecutor but if I were, I would not hesitate to bring a murder one case and I am convinced the case would be winnable on the circumstantial evidence alone.
    I haven't seen the movie, but I believe that this movie follows the premise of author Graysmith that Arthur Leigh Allen was Zodiac, right? If he was, is your statement about prosecution based on circumstantial evidence a theoretical statement?
    I may be wrong, but I thought ALA died not too many years ago.

    BTW, Tom Voight has a good Zodiac site with active discussion. http://www.zodiackiller.com/

    What do all of you think about the letters which have not been deciphered? Don't you think that computer technology could decode them? Might they hold more information about Zodiac's ID? The fact that apparently no work is being done on the authentic Zodiac letters which have never been read has ALWAYS bothered me!

    Maria

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacobi View Post
    Zodiac, the latest Fincher ('se7en', 'fight club') masterwork. Not to be confused with the vastly inferior flick "the zodiac" released a couple of years earlier, starring Robin Tunney (she of 'the craft' and 'prison break').
    Oh, wow; Fincher is a genius with his movies. Se7en and Fight Club were excellent. I'll have to see this one or get it when it's out on dvd.

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by MeoW333 View Post
    Oh, wow; Fincher is a genius with his movies. Se7en and Fight Club were excellent. I'll have to see this one or get it when it's out on dvd.
    Do get the Director's Cut. It will be worth both your time and money. There are some interviews there worth their weight in gold. I have both the original but it is just the movie. The second has both the movie with a couple of insignificant scenes added and several very important interviews you won't want to miss. Study them for subtle clues and direction on how to view the case. They were certainly eye openers for me. Hartnell, for example, was astonishing with his remembrance of details. You'll get the idea.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeekingJana View Post
    I haven't seen the movie, but I believe that this movie follows the premise of author Graysmith that Arthur Leigh Allen was Zodiac, right? If he was, is your statement about prosecution based on circumstantial evidence a theoretical statement?
    I may be wrong, but I thought ALA died not too many years ago.

    BTW, Tom Voight has a good Zodiac site with active discussion. http://www.zodiackiller.com/

    What do all of you think about the letters which have not been deciphered? Don't you think that computer technology could decode them? Might they hold more information about Zodiac's ID? The fact that apparently no work is being done on the authentic Zodiac letters which have never been read has ALWAYS bothered me!

    Maria
    Allen died in 1992 and the cause of death was listed as a heart attack with atherosclerosis but he had had diabetes for years, was very much overweight (nearly blind if I recall correctly, common with diabetes), but only 58 years old when he was found dead on the floor of his residence. I can only imagine the stress he must have been under over the years.

    Obviously one cannot try a dead man but my point was that in theory, he could have and should have been tried for these murders. But there was no definitive physical evidence that came forth that any prosecutor would want to run with. But there are some misconceptions that need to be clarified.

    One is that there has come to light certain evidence that exonerates him such as a fingerprint or DNA lifted from underneath one of the double stamps that Zodiac sent. I have argued with some knowledge on my part (having worked in this area for years) that unless it was possible to establish a chain of custody of evidence it is essentially worthless. We do not know and will probably never know how that print/DNA came to be placed there. It does not however match Allen's. That's all we know.

    It has been stated that none of the handwriting samples match Allen's. Of course he was ambidextrious being a natural left handed person but he could write very legibly with his right hand. But the problem here is that he never produced a genuine written document with his right hand for examination. He did of course scribble something but it wasn't something that could be said to be a genuine exemplar of his handwriting. Additionally, we have two handwriting experts who were at odds with one another. One said it wasn't and the other said "do not eliminate on the basis of the handwriting."

    So far as I know the only evidence are the letters and envelopes touched by many people and we can be relatively certain that Zodiac took pains not to leave prints or anything behind to link him. Although DNA was not in use back in those days, DNA came to be known as far back as the 1950s. Allen was by most accounts a highly intelligent individual with an IQ said to be as high as 160 but a complete failure at life and most telling with women. The frustration he must have felt throughout his life must have been palpable. It is known that he hated his own mother and I'm pretty certain that extended to all women.

    I won't go on further except to repeat again that there is no chain of custody existing for any physical evidence such as fingerprints, DNA or any other incriminating evidence that could link anyone to the crimes. The best evidence would be the letters/ciphers and the bootprint. They were 10 1/2 "Wing Walker" shoes but my understanding is that no such shoes were ever found in Allen's possession. His shoe size, however was 10 1/2.

    But take note of this fact. At the point that Allen was first interviewed by the three police officers at his place of employment, all murders ceased and never occurred again. I do not view this as coincidental. Nor do I view as coincidental that no Zodiac letters were sent during his incarceration for child molestation. And the ONLY letter the chief detective ever received from any of the 2,500 possible suspects came from Allen taunting Toschi for failure to break the case.

    One more thing, Bill Armstrong, the second primary detective tried for some 11 days to break the story of Don Cheney, Allen's chief accuser and was unable to do so. There are others who would be called to testify in such a trial. Allen's main defense would have been that the prosecution couldn't "prove" he did the crimes. I would have bet the farm he would not have taken the witness stand.

    At the very least, a trial would be held and we would have seen who held the stronger hand. We'll never know, of course, but these are just as few of the issues that would have come to light.

    The ciphers are only of interest to me in that they allow the essential information to be relayed which was soon accomplished early on. Other than that, I don't view them as particularly important nor interesting. Zodiac would lie and even lie about his lies. They are interesting artifacts but hardly more in my opinion.

    One final point and I will be quiet. Who stands to gain by keeping this controversy alive? As I have said, follow the money. There are people today who are picking over the bones of Zodiac and will keep this case alive for a century or more. As the individual I referenced said, they do NOT want this case solved and I concur completely.

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