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Brenton Harrison Tarrant, a 28-year-old man from Grafton, New South Wales, Australia, was arrested shortly afterward. He was described in media reports as a white supremacist and part of the alt-right. Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold Harris (left) and Klebold (right) in their senior year pictures, 1999 Born Eric David Harris (1981-04-09) April 9, 1981 Wichita, Kansas, U.S. Dylan Bennet Klebold (1981-09-11) September 11, 1981 Lakewood, Colorado, U.S. Died (1999-04-20) April 20, 1999 (aged 18 and 17) Columbine, Colorado, U.S. (both) Cause of death Suicide by self-inflicted gunshot wound (both.

Smiley
Directed byMichael Gallagher
Produced byMichael Wormser
Written byMichael Gallagher
Glasgow Phillips
Story byEzra Cooperstein
StarringCaitlin Gerard
Melanie Papalia
Andrew James Allen
Liza Weil
Toby Turner
Roger Bart
Keith David
Jason Horton
Shane Dawson
Music byDave Porter
CinematographyNicola B. Marsh
Edited byZach Anderson
Production
company
Distributed byFever Productions LLC
MIJ Productions
Release date
Running time
95 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

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He becomes a serial killer who sneaks into houses at night and whispers 'go to sleep' to his victims before killing them. 15 According to a 2013 article, the original image of Jeff the Killer may be an extensively edited picture of a girl who allegedly completed suicide in the fall of 2008. Christopher Jordan Dorner (June 4, 1979 – February 12, 2013) was a Los Angeles police officer who, beginning on February 3, 2013, committed a series of shootings in Orange County, Los Angeles County, Riverside County and San Bernardino County, California.

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Smiley is a 2012 American slasher film directed by Michael Gallagher and made by Level 10 Films.[1] The film stars Caitlin Gerard, Melanie Papalia, Keith David, Shane Dawson, Andrew James Allen, Toby Turner, and Liza Weil.[2] The film was released on October 12, 2012.[3][4]

Plot[edit]

The plot revolves around the titular Smiley killer, the subject of an Internet myth. Supposedly, if a person on a Chatroulette-style website types the phrase 'I did it for the lulz' three times, their chat partner will be murdered by a killer called Smiley (so named because he mutilated his own face by stitching his own eyes shut and carved his mouth into a smile) before they themselves are killed.

A college student named Ashley (Gerard) becomes roommates with Proxy (Papalia). Ashley decides to go to a party where she meets Zane (Allen), Mark (Turner) and Binder (Dawson), who is mocked by his classmates for having reported a case of pedophilia, earning him the nickname Pedobear.

One night Ashley and Proxy test out the Smiley myth with a random person online. After typing 'I did it for the lulz' three times, to their horror, the stranger is murdered. Proxy convinces Ashley to stay silent. However, Ashley begins experiencing guilt over the stranger's death. She also begins to believe that Smiley is stalking her and intends to kill her; her friends and a psychiatrist write this off as anxious hallucinations and nightmares. Ashley eventually goes to the police; there she tries to convince them, to no avail, to investigate the murders caused by Smiley. The police dismiss her, implying that she is going crazy and quite possibly on the receiving end of a large, elaborate prank.

When Proxy loses contact with Zane, she video chats Ashley in hysterics. Ashley goes to his house to check on him, only to find him shot dead with a handgun he purchased for self-defense. Instead of calling the police, Ashley picks up the gun and orders Proxy to type 'I did it for the lulz' three times, hoping to ambush and kill Smiley. However, she accidentally shoots Binder, who had been coming over to check on her. Moments later, Smiley appears and slits Binder's throat. Ashley is then attacked by multiple Smileys, finally throwing herself out a window to her presumed death to escape them.

It is then revealed that all Ashley's classmates, including Proxy, Binder, and the babysitter murdered in the opening, are all part of a fringe group of Anonymous. They created the Smiley myth as a large-scale prank, although they are satisfied with Ashley's death. Binder states that Smiley will likely live on long after them and inspire copycat killings.

Later, Proxy is video-chatting with Zane, questioning their morality. Zane dismisses her worries and types 'I did it for the lulz' three times as a joke. However, a real Smiley appears behind Proxy, kills her, and then waves at Zane via webcam. In a post-credits scene, Ashley is revealed to have survived her fall.

Cast[edit]

  • Caitlin Gerard as Ashley Brookes
  • Melanie Papalia as Proxy
  • Shane Dawson as Binder
  • Andrew James Allen as Zane
  • Liza Weil as Dr. Jenkins
  • Toby Turner as Mark
  • Roger Bart as Professor Clayton
  • Keith David as Diamond
  • Patrick O'Sullivan as Cooper
  • Nikki Limo as Stacy
  • Jason Horton as Flasher
  • Bree Essrig as Kim
  • Darrien Skylar as Mary
  • Michael Traynor as Smiley

Production and release[edit]

Gallagher began working on Smiley after performing in some episodes of the Totally Sketch series on YouTube.[5] As he was producing the film himself, Smiley had a small budget and Gallagher was active in various different parts of the film such as advertising and seeking MPAA approval.[6] Gallagher initially debated using stockings with a smiley face painted on it as Smiley's mask, but discarded the idea because it 'just wasn't scary enough'.[7] He chose to go with the final mask after imagining a 'guy who stitched an emoticon into his own face and thought, 'Wow, that's really creepy.''[7] Theatrical rights for the film were purchased by AMC Theatres who gave the film a limited screening on their independent platform on October 12, 2012.[8][9][10]

The film played in select AMC theaters throughout the United States, with fans able to request to host screenings of Smiley in their cities via Tugg.[11]

Reaction from 4chan and Anonymous[edit]

Prior to the film's official theatrical release, Gallagher and his family began receiving threats from people alleging to be from 4chan and Anonymous.[6] Personal information for Gallagher, his family, and anyone that had worked on Smiley was posted online with the recommendation that people use it to harass them.[12] In an interview with Fearnet, Gallagher stated that the site had posted the information as part of 'Operation Fuck Smiley' and that 'Their goal was to spoil the end of the movie, post pornography and gore on any website that talks about it, rate the movie really low... it was this horrible vendetta, like they wanted to destroy it because we talked about 4chan in the movie.'[12] The validity of these claims were questioned by Cole Strycker, author of Epic Win for Anonymous, who expressed suspicion that Gallagher was trying to use the death threats as a publicity stunt to promote the film.[6][13] In response, Gallagher asserted that the death threats were real and were not being used as a publicity stunt.[6]

Reception[edit]

The film received largely negative reviews and holds an 18% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on an average rating of 3.5/10 based on 22 reviews; several reviews called the film a 'rip off' of Scream and Candyman.[14] Criticism centered on claims of the film being 'dull' or 'generic', with additional criticisms over the acting performances and lack of originality.[15][16]Smiley also received negative reviews from The A.V. Club[17] and The New York Times.[18]

Bloody Disgusting panned the film, stating that the writers 'took a strong, modern idea, over-thought it and turned it into a generic '90s movie that'll have you throwing popcorn at the screen'.[19]Variety called the film 'uninspired', saying that 'the mayhem here is neither especially gory nor suspenseful'.[20] Mark Olsen of the Los Angeles Times gave a more positive review, calling the film a 'more or less satisfying low-key creeper'. Olsen praised Gerard, Weil, David, and Bart's performances, but called the story-telling 'repetitive'.[21]

References[edit]

  1. ^McCormac, Patty. 'For young director, bringing film to life was 'ethereal' experience'. Coast News. Retrieved September 10, 2012.
  2. ^''Smiley': La historia de un simpático asesino'. terror.cinequo.com (in Spanish). January 2, 2012. Archived from the original on June 19, 2013. Retrieved April 27, 2012.
  3. ^Barton, Steve (November 26, 2011). 'Smiley Happily Slashes His Way to Your Heart'. DreadCentral. Retrieved April 27, 2012.
  4. ^Kilday, Greg. 'AMC Theatres to Release Horror Thriller 'Smiley''. Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 10, 2012.
  5. ^McNary, Dave (June 29, 2012). 'Fever Prods. sets date for 'Smiley''. Variety. Retrieved July 31, 2015.
  6. ^ abcdHouston, Shannon. 'Michael Gallagher, Director of the Controversial New Film Smiley'. Paste Magazine. Retrieved February 21, 2014.
  7. ^ ab'Exclusive Interview: Writer/Director Michael Gallagher Talks Smiley, Sequel Plans and More'. Dread Central. Retrieved February 21, 2014.
  8. ^Kay, Jeremy. 'AMC Theatres, Fever Productions to release horror film Smiley'. Screen Daily. Retrieved February 21, 2014.
  9. ^Barton, Steve (October 14, 2011). 'Smiley Trailer Brings a Huge Smile to Horror Fans' Faces'. DreadCentral. Retrieved April 27, 2012.
  10. ^Miska, Brad (November 26, 2011). 'You Called 'Smiley', Now He's Here in the Form of a Trailer!'. Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved April 27, 2012.
  11. ^Turek, Ryan. 'The Serial Killer Smiley is Coming Your Way'. Shock Till You Drop. Retrieved September 10, 2012.
  12. ^ abWax, Alyse. 'Exclusive: We Talk Trolls and Death Threats With 'Smiley' Director Michael Gallagher'. Fearnet. Retrieved February 21, 2014.
  13. ^'Michael Gallagher Says 4Chan Sent Death Threats About Horror Flick'. Huffington Post. Retrieved February 21, 2014.
  14. ^'Smiley (2012)'. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  15. ^Wilson, Chuck. 'Smiley'. Village Voice. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  16. ^Scheck, Frank. 'Smiley: Film Review'. Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  17. ^'Review: Smiley'. AV Club. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  18. ^Catsoulis, Jeannette. 'Sutured Slasher Is On the Loose'. New York Times. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  19. ^'Review: Smiley'. Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  20. ^Harvey, Dennis. 'Smiley'. Variety. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  21. ^Olsen, Mark (October 11, 2012). 'Review: 'Smiley' an Internet Age horror film'. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 31, 2015.

External links[edit]

  • Official website
  • Smiley on IMDb
  • Smiley at Rotten Tomatoes
  • Smiley at Metacritic
Retrieved from 'https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Smiley_(2012_film)&oldid=991837182'
Born
Earl Conrad Bramblett

March 20, 1942
DiedApril 9, 2003 (aged 61)
Greensville Correctional Center, Jarratt, Virginia
Cause of deathElectric chair
Children2
Criminal penaltyDeath (December 16, 1997)
Details
Date28 August 1994
Location(s)Vinton, Virginia
Target(s)Hodges family
Killed4
Weapons

Earl Conrad Bramblett (March 20, 1942 – April 9, 2003) was an Americanmass murderer, convicted for the killing of four members of the Hodges family in August 1994 in Vinton, Virginia. Bramblett murdered each family member in their residence before setting it on fire, and in 1997 was sentenced to death for the murders.

Bramblett was executed by electric chair on April 9, 2003.[1]

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Murders[edit]

At around 4:30 a.m. on August 29, 1994, a passerby reported a fire at the Hodges residence in Vinton, Virginia.[2] Firefighters and police found fire burning throughout the house. Gaining entry, authorities found 37-year-old Teresa Lynn Hodges' body on a couch, still burning — she had been strangled and doused with diesel fuel.[2] On the second floor, they discovered William Blaine Hodges (aged 41) dead on a bed next to a .22 caliber gun with the barrel removed, shot through his left temple, but not burned. In a second bed they found daughters Winter (aged 11) and Anah (aged 3); both had been shot at close range, and Anah had sustained mild burns.[3]

Further inspection of the Hodges house revealed purposefully-disconnected telephone lines and the presence of a petroleum-based accelerant in several areas.[2]

Having found Blaine Hodges' body next to a gun, police at first theorized that Blaine had killed his family and then himself; Blaine, a former U.S. Postal Service employee, was about to serve six months in federal prison for embezzlement.[1] Further investigation determined that the barrel of the murder weapon had been removed after Blaine had been killed, and that Blaine had been killed before the rest of his family.[2]

Investigation[edit]

Earl Bramblett, from Spartanburg, South Carolina, was a close friend of the Hodges family. Police requested an interview with Bramblett, during which they told him the family had died in a fire, without mentioning the evidence of violence.[2] Bramblett displayed anger and stated that the 'son of a bitch offed his family and killed himself', which indicated prior knowledge and immediately made him a prime suspect.[1]

Soon police gathered additional incriminating evidence against Bramblett. A witness had seen a vehicle similar to Bramblett's driving past the Hodges home during the fire, without stopping. Drawings of stick figures with arrows that corresponded to the Hodges' bullet wounds were found at Bramblett's place of employment.

Bramblett's sister provided police with a box he had left with her, which contained several audiotapes on which he spoke of his sexual attraction to 11-year-old Winter Hodges, and of his belief that the family, including Winter, was conspiring to set him up for child molestation charges.

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A DNA test on a pubic hair found in the bedroom where the girls were found was matched to Bramblett.[3] A pair of jeans were found soaking at his place of employment, discovered by another employee after noticing water leaking through the door, and were determined to contain stains of the same flammable liquid used to start the fire at the Hodges's home. The bullets used to kill the victims were determined to be of the same composition as bullets found in a vehicle belonging to Bramblett.

It was discovered that Bramblett punched his time card at work 20 minutes after the fire was started (the drive time from the Hodges home to his job was 20 minutes) and, after realizing his error, attempted to black out the entry on his time-card.

In addition, two women testified that, in the 1970s, Bramblett had given them alcohol and molested them when they were eleven and fourteen years old.[1]

Arrest and conviction[edit]

4chan Serial Killer Dying

Bramblett was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death on December 16, 1997, after the jury deliberated for one hour.

Execution[edit]

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After a clemency petition to Governor of VirginiaMark Warner was rejected, along with an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, Earl Bramblett was executed in the electric chair for the murder of the Hodges family at Greensville Correctional Center, Jarratt, Virginia, on April 9, 2003. He was sixty-one years old at the time of his death, choosing the electric chair over lethal injection as a form of protest. His final words were, 'I didn't murder the Hodges family. I've never murdered anybody. I'm going to my death with a clear conscience. I am going to my death having had a great life because of my two great sons, Mike and Doug.'[4] His body was cremated after the electrocution.[5]

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Disappearances of Tammy Akers and Angela Rader[edit]

Bramblett was a suspect in the 1977 disappearances of Tammy Akers and Angela Rader, who were both 14 years old and worked for him at the time. Bramblett reportedly told friends that he wished he had not 'hurt Tammy' three years after she went missing, though he was never charged in either Akers's or Rader's disappearances and their whereabouts are still unknown.[6]

Media[edit]

Bramblett's case was featured on the popular CourtTV crime show Forensic Files - Season 8, Episode 16: 'Private Thoughts'[7] and Discovery Channel'sThe New Detectives - Season 4, Episode 4: 'Dead Wrong'.[8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  1. ^ abcdBramblett v. Commonwealth of Virginia
  2. ^ abcdeDelfino, Michelangelo; Day, Mary E. (2008). Death Penalty USA 2003 - 2004. MoBeta Publishing. p. 76. ISBN9780972514132. bramblett hodges murders.
  3. ^ abGlod, Maria (2003-04-10). 'Family's Killer Dies in Va. Electric Chair'. ISSN0190-8286. Retrieved 2018-04-11.
  4. ^'Earl Conrad Bramblett #845'. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
  5. ^https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=+Bramblett&GSfn=Earl&GSbyrel=all&GSdy=2003&GSdyrel=in&GSob=n&GRid=154105697&df=all&
  6. ^Meaghan Elizabeth Good. 'The Charley Project: Angela Mae Rader'. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
  7. ^'Forensic Files Episode List - Forensic Files'. Forensic Files. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  8. ^'THE NEW DETECTIVES – Season 4 Ep 4 'Dead Wrong''. FilmRise. Retrieved 22 February 2017.

External links[edit]

  • Forensic Files - Season 8, Episode 16: 'Private Thoughts' (22 minutes) Forensic Files - YouTube Channel
  • The New Detectives - Season 4, Episode 4: 'Dead Wrong' (53 minutes) FilmRise -YouTube Channel

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Retrieved from 'https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Earl_Bramblett&oldid=950501968'