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Based on the bestselling book by Vincent Bugliosi, the two-part TV movie Helter Skelter is a clinical but often chilling recount of the arrest and trial of Charles Manson and his cult for a pair of horrific murders in 1969. Character actor George DiCenzo is a bit dry as prosecutor Bugliosi, who must patch together a series of far-flung clues to incarcerate Manson for the murder spree, which claimed the life of actress Sharon Tate, among others; he and the rest of the capable cast (which includes Marilyn Burns from the '74 Texas Chainsaw Massacre) are completely overshadowed by Steve Railsback's disturbing performance as Manson. Railsback is the main reason to revisit this feature, which shocked many during its network run in 1976, but now seems methodical in its pacing and direction. Warner Bros.'s DVD is the longer 184-minute version of the film, which should please viewers accustomed to the 119-minute rebroadcast cut; otherwise, the disc is disappointingly supplement-free.

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WA31938 Helter Skelter DVD (1976/Steve Railsback) $19.98 $17.99