I had been looking forward to seeing Conviction after hearing about the story a while ago, how a sister sacrificed pretty much her life and her marriage to save her brother. Against all odds, she put herself through law school and passed the bar exam only so that she could be her brother’s attorney. I was pleasantly surprised to find the movie in one of the ones available through KrisWorld on my way to Singapore.
The Walters children grew up with minimal adult supervision in Ayers, Massachusetts – with their mum having children from different fathers, and yet believing that she worked and dedicated her life to their cause. Betty-Anne and Kenny ended up relying on each other, and playing mischief in the neighbourhood, like breaking into a house in the area, just so that they could pretend to have a normal life.
When a lady was stabbed to death, Kenny was accused of murder and was convicted of the crime as his blood type matched the perpetrator’s. After eighteen years, Kenny was freed thanks to Betty-Anne’s sacrifice and hard work and thanks to DNA technology.
The part of the sister, Betty-Anne Walters is played by Hillary Swank, with the brother, Kenneth (Kenny) Waters played very convincingly by Sam Rockwell. Minnie Driver also plays in the movie as Betty-Anne’s classmate, friend and supporter. It’s also good to see Juliette Lewis back in a major-release movie scene. She plays Roseanna Perry, one of the key witnesses against Kenny Waters.
I couldn’t imagine such love and bond from a sibling -she pretty much devoted her adult life to save her brother, and even went through rigorous law school study just so that he could be freed. Whilst the story is very inspirational, somehow the delivery is a bit touch-and-go at times. The scenes don’t flow naturally and the movie seems to be full of interrelated ‘snap-shots’. Conviction is a good movie but it could have been great.