Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father
Filmmaker Kurt Kuenne's poignant tribute to his murdered childhood friend, Andrew Bagby, tells the story of a child custody battle between the baby's grieving grandparents and Shirley Turner, Bagby's pregnant ex-girlfriend and suspected killer. Initially, Kuenne made this documentary as a memorial for Andrew's loved ones, but it morphs into an emotional legal odyssey when Turner goes free on bail and is allowed to raise her son.
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- Kurt Kuenne
- DVD and streaming
NRNot rated. This movie has not been rated by the MPAA.
Full Screen 1.33:1Subtitles
NoLanguage and sound
English: Dolby Digital 2.0 StereoOther features
Color; interactive menus; scene access; Road to reform: Petitions and links for activists working on Judicial Reform; deleted scenes; additional footage of Andrew and Zachary including the famous 'Best Man Speech'; additional featurettes.
Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His FatherClose
Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father is a crime documentary about the 2001 murder of Andrew Bagby. It draws on interviews with friends, family members, and former colleagues about his life, with the focus on his alleged killer, ex-girlfriend Shirley Turner. It's very emotionally wrenching, due to the understandable sadness and anguish suffered by Bagby's friends and family. It contains profanity throughout (including "f--k") and a few gut-wrenching plot twists, one of which involves a heartbreaking tragedy related to a child. Though there's no graphic violent imagery, the documentary's filming style is intense and often replays emotions and new discoveries for particularly dramatic effect. It also intercuts the sound of gunshots with pictures of the deceased as a child or teenager. Best for mature teens and older, but likely to disturb anyone who watches it.
- Sexual Content
- An interview subject says Bagby's girlfriend used to describe sex between them in crass terms.
- Spoiler alert: A murder by multiple gunshots is recounted in news clips, TV broadcasts, discussions, and indirect reenactments; a woman drowns a child and then herself.
- Multiple uses of "f--k"; also "hell," "s--t," "bitch," "a--hole," "Jesus Christ," "piss," and "goddamn."
- Social Behavior
- Testimony to the power of family, friendship, and loyalty in preserving someone's legacy; the power of persistence in righting wrongs or working to change the criminal justice system. Illustrates the need for greater victim advocacy, particularly for children.
- Not applicable
- Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol
- Archival footage includes champagne at wedding; two men drink a beer to commemorate a friend; photo of woman who looks inebriated shown repeatedly.
- Age appropriate
- Not an issue
- Depends on your kid and your family
- Not appropriate for kids of the age most likely to want to see it