Best U.S Documentary of 2015 : Matt Shepard Is A Friend Of Mine

On October 7, 1998, University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard was brutally beaten, tied to a fence and left to die because he was gay.

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Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine
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Matt Shepard Is A Friend Of Mine

We get to “meet” Matthew and get to “know him” through his friend, Michele Josue, she tells the heartbreaking story about Matt Shepard – who he was from friends perspective and that he was beaten, tortured and left to die near Laramie, Wyoming on the night of October 6, 1998. He died six days later at Poudre Valley Hospital in Fort Collins, Colorado, on October 12, 1998, from severe head injuries.

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You most likely have heard about Matt Shepard story before, but you never have heard it told like Michele, tells it you. You get to hear several of Matthew’s friends telling how they saw him and how he impacted their life and still are.

Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine, Michele Josue’s debut and the first film helmed by someone from Matt’s life, is an intimate tribute to the young man she knew, the young man behind the story that rocked the U.S and caused outcry around the world in 1998.

Director Michele Josue and Matt Shepard in 1995
Director Michele Josue and Matt Shepard in 1995

She even talked with the parents of Matthew, Judy and Dennis Shepard, about what they have been through and how they would describe their son.

And Judy says the following about the documentary Matt Shepard Is A Friend Of Mine and Michele Josue :

“Michele was one of Matt’s most cherished friends, as are others whom she spent years interviewing, sharing how Matt changed them and how they changed themselves in the wake of his passing. Her film will forever stand as a unique view into our son’s heart and his hopes. We are profoundly grateful that others will be able to share in its message.”

Judy Shepard

This documentary are unique portray of Matt Shepard that we never have seen before and with teary eyes, because after seen the documentary I felt like he was one of  my friend too, concludes this must be the most important documentary from the U.S that was released in 2015 and needs to get to be called Best U.S Documentary of 2015.

Matthews brother said about him while filming him :

Look there is my brother, he’s awesome.

Logan Shepard

Buy it Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine [Region 1] (UK/Ireland/Europe/Scandinavia).

Buy it Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine (USA)

In the U.S you can even see it on Netflix.

(Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine was first time released on DVD, November 3, 2015).

The Hate Crime against Matt Shepard

Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson were arrested shortly after the attack and charged with murder following Shepard’s death.

The jury found McKinney guilty of felony murder and not guilty of premeditated murder. As they began to deliberate on the death penalty, Shepard’s parents brokered a deal, resulting in McKinney’s receiving two consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole.

Henderson pleaded guilty to murder and kidnapping on April 5, 1999 and agreed to testify against McKinney to avoid the death penalty; he received two consecutive life sentences.

Shepard’s murder brought national and international attention to hate crime legislation at the state and federal levels. In October 2009, the United States Congress passed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act (commonly the “Matthew Shepard Act” or “Shepard/Byrd Act” for short), and on October 28, 2009, President Barack Obama signed the legislation into law. Following her son’s murder, Matthew’s mother Judy Shepard became a prominent LGBT rights activist and established the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

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