Sensational stories about crimes and criminals, we can see the headlines in the news, read about it on the internet, watch in chronicles and TV series. There are so many movies inspired by true stories and characters. The criminals have been romantically depicted and sometimes made almost into heroic figures. Movies like The Godfather, Scarface, and many more have shown us the criminal characters that have great charisma and strength. We get attracted with the actions of these anti-heroes, even though rationally we understand that they are destructive and harmful to society. The thing is that these types of movies awake the ambivalent feeling towards usual morality.
Throughout the history there has been a phenomenon of “dangerous couples” or “partners in crime” that were accomplices in criminal acts. “Partners in crime” build a strong psychological bond between them, and most commonly it’s a relationship, nevertheless of their genders. They match in their dark desires, feed on each other’s weaknesses and together build a destructive relationship that harms other people too, usually in very brutal ways. The real life stories turned into movies show us the strength and madness growing between the partners. In these stories, there are cases of murders, rapes, kidnappings, robberies and deceiving.
The repeated psychological pattern is between psychopathy and narcissistic individuals that are forming symbiotic relationship. They build their relation on the premise that they’re superior to other couples in sexual, intellectual or social ways. They believe they’re above the rules and law. By this drive, everything becomes possible for them, and there are no boundaries or limits. It seems like a game of power, and once it’s over they, just seek the way out. Since the crimes during their relationship were so brutal, most of the time they get convicted for life, or sentenced to death. Some of the partners try to get away with accusing the other partner, but the truth always comes out; that partners in crime share the same violent nature. So here are some of the deadliest real-life couples depicted in movies.
10. Love’s Deadly Triangle: The Texas Cadet Murder
The movie is made based on the true story of Diane Zamora and David Graham. Two high school sweethearts who were already engaged and planning to marry after finishing Navy Academy.
When David said to Diane that he slept with his classmate Adrianne Jones, Diane insisted that David has to kill her. They ended up killing her together, but it was discovered afterwards that David didn’t cheat on Diane. Before the trial started, the TV Movie was released and shown on television. Swearing Allegiance is about the killing couple and victim, cadet Adrianne Jones, starring Holly Marie Combs.
9. The Long Island Lolita
The story about Amy Fisher was full of twists and turns and the case lasted for years. She was having an affair with Joey Buttafuoco since she was 16, and shot his wife when she was 17. Amy Fisher was claiming that Joey had pushed her to work as a prostitute, and encouraged the idea of killing his wife. There are many versions of this story made into TV movies: Amy Fisher: My story- Lethal Lolita (1992.), Casualties of Love: The Long Island Lolita Story (1993.), The Amy Fisher Story (2012), starring Drew Barrymore, Triple Fisher: The Lethal Lolitas of Long Island.
8. Perfect Crime Went Wrong
Richard Loeb, 18, and his friend and lover Nathan Leopold, 19, were brilliant students of law, coming from rich families. Together they had the idea to perform a “perfect crime”, influenced by Nietzschean “supermen”, to whom the laws didn’t apply. They thought they were so much better than everybody else that it didn’t matter if they chose somebody for their deadly “experiment”. Alfred Hitchcock made the movie Rope, inspired by this couple of “geniuses”. The movie is exceptional in its form, taking place in real time, and it’s edited in a way that looks like one continuous shot. To this trial of the century, Sigmund Freud was invited to do analysis, but had to reject due to his pure health condition. Another important movie inspired with the real characters was Compulsion, a movie directed by Richard Fleischer, and starring Orson Welles.
7. Heavenly Creatures
Pauline Parker and Juliet Hulme’s trial was a sensational affair, with speculations about a possible lesbian relationship between two teenagers, as well as insanity. They had killed Pauline’s mother Honora Rieper.
The movie Heavenly Creatures depicts two girls meeting and how their relationship grew stronger and more obsessive. They were creating another world that was like heaven to them. One morning in the park, two girls killed Pauline’s mother with a brick in an old stocking because she was interfering in their relationship. The movie was directed by Peter Jackson.
In real life, the two girls were convicted to five years in prison, as they were too young to be considered for a death penalty. Today, Juliet Hulme is a novelist of detective stories, writing under the pseudonym Anne Perry, and Pauline Parker is running a children’s riding school.
6. Stolen Life
Phillip Garrido was a sex offender, serving his sentence in jail, when he met his future wife Nancy. They got married between the prison walls, and even though he was described as an incredible manipulator, his wife Nancy abducted 11-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard in South Lake Tahoe. Jaycee Lee Dugard was turned into a sex slave since the beginning of the abduction and she gave birth to two daughters while being in captivity that lasted for 18 years.
In July 2010, the State of California approved the $20 million settlement for the victim of the kidnapping, because of the various lapses of the Corrections Department. Phillip Garrido was sentenced to 431 years of prison, and Nancy was sentenced 36 to life in prison. The events of this crime were subject of one of the series Wicked Attraction.
5. Body Snatchers
William Hare and William Burke were the subjects of many movies and TV series. What makes this couple even more interesting is that they had female accomplices, Burke’s mistress Helen Mcdougal and Hare’s wife Margaret Laird.
In the period of 10 months they had 16 victims. They were killing and selling the corpses to Doctor Robert Knox as dissection material for his anatomy lectures. Their story is represented in the movie The Body Snatcher starring two legends of horror production from the beginning of 20th Century; Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi.
4. Legendary Outlaws: Bonnie and Clyde
Bonnie and Clyde became a legendary couple after the movie that was a great success. It starred the likes of Faye Dunaway as Bonnie Parker, and Warren Beatty as Clyde Barrow. The movie is a romanticized version of their life. Bonnie had no criminal record before meeting Clyde who was an ex con. Historians believe that Bonnie chose the path of crime, because she was in love. On most of the pictures, Bonnie and Clyde are looking like they are madly in love, but the presence of guns gives the image a rather morbid and scary twist. For 21 months of their rampage, they were robbing banks, stores, and killing more or less everybody who was in their way; including police officers. They were killed in their car, from the gunshots, while trying to escape from a police chase.
3. Deal With The Devil
The movie Karla was released in Canada, and was quite controversial at the time where certain groups even trying to ban it. Karla Homolka and Paul Bernardo were accused for raping and killing three girls, one of them being Karla’s sister Tammy. Karla was denying her involvement in the crimes, and made a deal with the prosecutors to lower her sentence to 12 years of prison. Paul Bernardo however, was sentenced for life in prison. When the videotapes from the crime scenes were found, it was discovered that Karla had much more to do with the crimes than she was claiming.
2. Lonely Hearts Killers
“There are many lonely people dying to be loved and some who will kill for it.”
Raymond Fernandez learned about voodoo magic while being in prison for theft. As soon as he was free, he believed that he could use his new skills on women. So, he would publish an advertisement for lonely women, seduce them, then steal their money and run away. He kept this up until he met Martha Beck, whom left her two kids to the Salvation Army in order to be with Raymond. They continued with robbing women, but as Martha’s jealousy grew stronger, they started killing their victims. It is believed they killed around 20 women by the time they were caught by the police. They were sentenced to death, and died by the electric chair. In the movie Lonely Hearts portraying this horrendous story, it starred the likes of Salma Hayek, John Travolta and Jared Leto.
1. Natural Born Killers
Charles Starkweather was 18, and his girlfriend Caril Ann Fugate was 13 when they started dating. Charles killed his mother, stepfather and half-sister, and between them they had 11 victims, in the period of two months. He was executed by the electric chair, while Caril Ann served 17-years in prison, claiming that Charles abducted her.
The two teenagers inspired the movies; Badlands, Natural Born Killers and True Romance. They’ve become a couple symbolizing random violence, and movies exploring how the couple can develop the murderous drive together.