Host a watch party for Paradise Lost 3
Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory is the conclusion of the award-winning HBO Documentary Film series that spawned a world-wide movement to free three teenagers – Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley – wrongfully convicted of one of the most notorious child murder cases in U.S. history.
The film tells the complete story of the provocative case (for those who haven't seen the first two films!) and includes new footage and interviews, including the dramatic release of the three men in August 2011 (for those who have seen the first two films!).
Host a viewing party and help EJUSA to build our movement!
1. Choose a date to watch the film:
- The HBO exclusive premiere airs Thursday, January 12 from 9-11p EST.
- Other HBO playdates: Jan. 15 (4:30p), Jan. 17 (noon, midnight), Jan. 20 (7p), Jan. 25 (2p), Jan. 26 (7:30p), Jan. 28 (10:30a) and Jan. 30 (5:30p)
- HBO2 playdates: Jan. 16 (10p), Jan. 18 (8p), Jan. 23 (1p) and Jan. 29 (11:30p)
- If you have HBO, you can also watch the film anytime after Jan. 12 on your computer/mobile device through HBO GO.
- If you don't have HBO, check back here. We'll post information on how to get the DVD as soon as we have it.
2. Invite your friends. Serve popcorn, or ask people to bring snacks!
3. Before the movie, ask your friends to share what they know about the West Memphis 3 case. You can read EJUSA's article about their release if you'd like to share some background. Or wait and let the movie speak for itself!
4. After the movie, have a short discussion about the film. Some questions you can ask:
- What did you see go wrong in the trial and investigation that led to these innocent men being convicted? What changes would you make in the criminal justice system to prevent this kind of thing from happening to others?
- One of the West Memphis 3, Damien Echols, was sentenced to death. How often do you think innocent people are sentenced to death? Do you think anyone innocent has ever been executed?
- What are your thoughts about the death penalty? Are cases like this a good reason to repeal it? What are other ways that the death penalty system is broken?
- In August 2011, the West Memphis 3 accepted Alford pleas in which they asserted their innocence but plead guilty to get out of jail. Following their release, Jason said: “I did not want to take the deal from the get go, but, however, they’re tryin’ to kill Damien and sometimes you just gotta bite the gun to save somebody.” What is an Alford plea? What is its purpose? What would you have done if you were in Jason’s shoes?
5. Ask your friends to take action. Some things your friends can do:
- Sign EJUSA's petition asking the Governor of Arkansas to pardon the West Memphis 3, so they can get the full exoneration they deserve. If you have a laptop handy, your guests can sign the petition on the spot at ejusa.org/wm3.
- Like EJUSA on Facebook and Paradise Lost 3 on Facebook, or follow @ejusa on Twitter to continue the conversation. Post about the movie, recommend it to your friends, or comment on our posts to raise more awareness.
- Contribute $10 to EJUSA's work to end the death penalty. If you collect donations from your friends, you can mail them to us at EJUSA Paradise Lost Party, 20 Jay Street Suite #808, Brooklyn, NY 11201. Include a note telling us how the party went!
- Learn more about the risk of executing an innocent person. Share EJUSA's innocence factsheet with others and ask them to sign up at ejusa.org/signup.
Has your group called for a moratorium on executions?
4,836 groups already on board
Some of the latest:
- Oregon Commission on Hispanic Affairs
- The Committee for the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) (Paris)
- The Birmingham News (AL)
- Kansas Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (KS)
- Our Lady of the Lake Parish Council (Lake Ozark, MO)