New Movies: Anatomy of a Murder

Truman Capote called it a "nonfiction novel," a dubious tag designed to draw attention to the undeniable fact that he had used the novelist's craft to render reality. Through painstaking accretion of minutiae, In Cold Blood harrowingly anatomized a multiple murder and in the process brought literary life to six dead people. They were the four members of the prosperous Clutter family of Holcomb, Kans., and their killers. Perry Smith and Dick Hickock, who were executed in 1965. Although the book was flawed by a seeming excess of sympathy for the criminals,...

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