Collect all the tapes, all the writing, all the history. Four women belonging to cult leader Jim Jones' inner circle help plan the 1978 Jonestown massacre in Guyana, which leaves more than 900 people dead. Female Peoples Temple Member (archival): He said, “I really want to get away from him. Published by EMI Longitude Music When it comes to documentaries about cults, Jonestown: ... Messiah on Trial is – a follow-up to The End of the World Cult (so watch that one first!). I’m doing this for you, Debbie.”. I wanted to go. On-screen text: 909 Peoples Temple members died at Jonestown. Man (archival, subtitles): Christine, your life has been extended to today. The dark side of Jim Jones is exposed; the cult flees to Jonestown. But I was at a point where I didn’t know how much more time I was going to be alive. Former Peoples Temple Member (archival): He was talking integration. If you came in as a stranger and didn’t know anything about the politics, you were thinking you were entering an old-time religion service. On-screen text: Peoples Temple Children’s Choir — Welcome. A Storyville documentary. Jim Jones’ sons tell all in new Jonestown doc. We all wanted to go. 2007 | TV-14 | 1 hr 44 min | FEATURE FILM. So it was through that that she met Jim Jones, and came back saying that he had invited her to church this next Sunday. Peoples Temple welcomed people of every race and ethnicity. Jim Jones (archival, subtitles): You’re gonna help yourself, or you’ll get no help! A heroic congressman arrives; Temple members plot their escape. 1 hr 44 min. The Life & Death of Peoples Temple. And we feel that no one really tried Christianity too effectively in the Judeo-Christian tradition. Jim Jones Jr., Peoples Temple Member: And he was kind of left to his own devices. We were going to wait for them to come in and we were going to kill 'em all when they came in. With this documentary, you see the fallout of crimes Michael Travesser admitted to in the first documentary, including the trial and sentencing. Tim Reiterman, Journalist: Those of us in the news media viewed Congressman Ryan as a form of protection, a shield of the United States. If I needed clothes, that was taken care of. or communication with parents or any kind of, you know, update that could show us, really, that there’s a whole other thing going on besides what Jim was interpreting for us. And I can tell you right now, that from the few conversations I’ve had with some of the folks here already this evening, that whatever these comments are — there are some people here who believe that this is the best thing they’ve ever had in their whole lives. They were well looked after. Performed by The Five Blind Boys of Mississippi Male Peoples Temple Member (archival): Can you do it? Former Peoples Temple Member (archival): My impression now — that those are fronts for him. It’s happening right now.”, Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: Jim Jones came to talk to me and the first thing he said was, “Don’t say anything to the reporters. You could sit here and talk all day long and no words could describe the peace, the beauty, the sense of accomplishment and responsibility and camaraderie that’s here. You think they should be here? Do you think you could? 2007, Crime - 100 min 14 Comments. On-screen text: Peoples Temple Farm, Ukiah — Redwood Valley, California. And he was getting more and more paranoid. I could see myself in Jonestown walking, and when I looked to my left, there was my son. I was an alcoholic. “I gave my rights up to him. A conservative candidate and a liberal candidate, George Moscone. I’m right now making a call to Russia. They try to hide underneath the wheels. And you’re, you know, you’re in love and then — you know, the honeymoon wears off and reality sets in. Kind of the kid who ran wild in the street, you know what I mean? They had cabins. It gave them the opportunity to — to really be a part of creating a utopia. Oh, what he’s done for me. Having this vision to change the world, but having this whole undercurrent of dysfunction that was underneath that vision. Everything was new and unique and —- and just fun. Did he feel like he was potent and — and omnipotent enough to really get people to kill themselves when he said so? Jen Holmes They would build a new community free of oppression and violence and it was to be their paradise on Earth, but outsiders threatened to expose the dark side of their leader. And the bag fell and he was gone. Doubletree Hotel Berkeley Marina They called me and some of them said, you know, “You don’t know nothing about the Church. Narrator (anonymous letter, archival): “If nobody understands, it matters not. Jackie Speier, Aide to Congressman Leo Ryan (archival, subtitles): Now do I both understand you to say that you both want to leave Jonestown on this date, November 18th, 1978? And when he flung it and let it go, the place got dead quiet like. Woman (archival): Before I came here, I was taking LSD, marijuana, every type of dope you can imagine. He was obsessed with religion; he was obsessed with death. S1-3 streaming until 28 Jan 2021. Jonestown was an official selection of numerous 2006 film festivals, including Tribeca, Silverdocs, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Anybody wants to get out of here, can get out of here. I do agree that this was more mass killing than mass suicide as some were injected or forced to drink the juice against their will. Ed Rudolph, Video Arts/San Francisco, Online Editor Select the department you want to search in. JONESTOWN: TERROR IN THE JUNGLE premieres Sat., Nov. 17 at 9/8c on SundanceTV. The government was not taking care of the people. John Koetzner, Mendocino College Library Eugene Smith, Peoples Temple Member: My wife had gone over three months prior. [Expletive] slaughtered. A documentary on the 40th anniversary of the largest murder-suicide in American histo... more Start watching Truth and Lies: Jonestown, Paradise Lost Stream thousands of shows and movies, with plans starting at $5.99/month. Quickly! USC, School of Cinema-Television, David Gottlieb and Jim Ruxin As a child I was undoubtedly one of the poor in the community, never accepted. Be a leader, not a follower!! Then, I’d work on files. People were being taken to airports. By Christmas, do you want to be gone?! Narrator (anonymous letter, archival): “To whomever finds this note. Stephen Sung, Sound Technician: We drove back to the airstrip, Port Kaituma. Filmed By – The Peoples Temple Directed By – Michael Mahaffie Produced By – Clare Tucker Music By – Tyler Rogers Executive Producers – Michael Barnett, Dominique Dauwe As you see me as your father, I’ll be your father.” He said, “If you see me as your God, I’ll be your God.”. Do you think they ought to get a good boxing?” And then he’d get a resounding roar, “Yes!”. What he spoke from the pulpit wasn’t what he did behind the scenes. He had books. If I really wanted to I’m — I’m free to go, if I really wanted to. It’s overwhelming, it really is. But shortly afterwards, I heard my partner, the cameraman. Inside, I just wanted things to stop. The choir was interracial and they used to sing this song — “Never heard a man speak like this man before. And you’re seeing in the distance, housing complexes, that are being built. He said, “Now, did you see any lightning come from the sky and strike me dead?”. Male Peoples Temple Member (archival): Would you do it? Frank Johnston, The Washington Post Deborah Layton, Peoples Temple Member, Author, Seductive Poison: In Jonestown, there was a speaker system and only Jim spoke on it. He was sitting up. All right, let us not fall into in the hands of the enemy. Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: I went and I spoke to the Congressman in the pavilion. Jim Jones (singing, archival): Never shall forget what He’s done for me. They want to have their immigrant Black, Indian population removed in six months. Rebecca Moore, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: I think the early sixties had been a time of great optimism; there was a belief that we could change the world through social movements. Incredibly paranoid. You know, and we were sharp. People could not leave him. It’s blasphemy to talk about going back when you have not been given any approval! Lovella Brown We must never allow that because this is the kind of thing that ushers in the terror of a Hitler’s Germany. I remember someone coming to me and telling me that Congressman Ryan was dead. You’re going to walk again.” And the whole auditorium went totally crazy. So she looked in the Indianapolis Star, and in that Indianapolis Star was Jim Jones’s ad that he had some monkeys to sell. There were poor children. Coming there, being there in the meetings, sitting, listening — you know, supporting, working. A small child would turn in a parent. It is really nice here. And that’s the kind of religious thing that I am excited about, and have some respect for. John R. Hall, Sociologist: They were giving their life’s money and savings to the church, but in exchange, the church was agreeing to take care of them in the community, not just in a nursing home. But if it’s so damned bad, why is he leaving his son here? Chilling documentary about Jonestown and its aftermath. You can do it. I heard Jim Jones was going to be coming to Philadelphia, and coming to Benjamin Franklin High School. I said, “You dropped something,” and this little boy, about nine years old, started saying, “He passed a note! They see Christ in me, a hope of glory. Male Peoples Temple Member (archival): Do you want to share with them this morning? And as I lay there frightened, not sure what to do, and as I shivered, he’d say to me, “This is for you. George Troy Jon Vargo, Video Arts/San Francisco, Re-Recording Mixer All of a sudden, we saw a dump truck from far away arriving to this airstrip. And that the women were all lesbians and the guys were all gay. The message of Peoples Temple was, “No, the dream is alive.”. Jim Jones was hated and despised by some people, particularly in the white community. Mike Harlow, Research Assistance Bryan Kravitz, Peoples Temple Member: He was there for three evenings, and the third evening I went off on the bus and came to California. Marshall Kilduff, journalist I’m not going to let you do this alone.”, Marshall Kilduff, Journalist: I finally heard from some ex-members who heard I was interested in writing a story about the Temple for New West magazine, and they took a chance. We wanted to live, to shine, to bring light to a world that is dying for a little bit of love.”. Eugene Cordell, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: We had some people that disagreed with Jimmy. There's a problem loading this menu right now. Patricia Ryan, Personal Collection Female Peoples Temple Member (archival): But they won’t listen to me. This went probably as well as it possibly could go, so far. And there was a sort of feeling that smaller groups — neighborhood groups, activist groups — had a bigger chance. Jane Powell Jonestown . Fielding McGehee, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: Eventually, the rhetoric ratchets up enough that she is shouted down. We’ve worked too hard.”. Janet Shular, Peoples Temple Member: The first time I visited Peoples Temple, I drove at the urging of a friend — a co-worker — to Redwood Valley. Chuck Wilmore, Personal Collection John R. Hall, Sociologist: The Moscone election was very close. TV-14. Vernon Gosney, Peoples Temple Member: A father would turn in a son. Yes, we tried it. We didn’t commit suicide. You’re my people. It’s a shame it didn’t happen. While receiving it, the State Department asked each person if they wanted to fly home instead of returning to Jonestown. And I went Wednesday night and I listened to him, and I was impressed by how it was such an interracial group and people were really happy. Jim Jones (archival, subtitles): There’s a little town in Indiana. Well, you know, you’re very tired! Cydney Hill, SFSU Speak up! They looked in people’s faces. "Jonestown" is a thoroughly conventional documentary -- archival footage, images and voice recordings alternating with talking head interviews. We must all learn from this so those people did not die in vain. He saw that the preachers were like father figures to their congregations. Watch Jonestown Massacre: As We Watched: on DIRECTV In 1978, cult leader Jim Jones lures his followers to Jonestown, Guyana, where he commits a mass murder-suicide of … He took it as a betrayal to the cause, and to him personally. Rebecca Moore, Relative of Peoples Temple Member: The reward for the election of George Moscone was the appointment of Jim Jones as Chairman of the City Housing Authority. There were about a hundred and twenty people. Featuring never-before-seen footage, this documentary delivers a startling new look at the Peoples Temple, headed by preacher Jim Jones who, in 1978, led more than 900 members to Guyana, where he orchestrated a mass suicide via tainted punch. Jim Jones Jr., Peoples Temple Member: He talked black. Juanell Smart, Peoples Temple member Watch now. The blurb is outright false - there is nothing supernatural about it and no real threat lurking at the site of the massacre. Adapted for Film by Tom Phillips. A diverse group, the members of Peoples Temple shared a common goal: to create an egalitarian society free of problems of class and race. There were grape vines everywhere, and I fell in love. Jim Jones (archival, subtitles): Hurry, hurry, my children, hurry! Jim Jones Jr., Peoples Temple Member: The move to California was really fun. They’ll torture our seniors. The reporter next to me said, “I’ve never felt anything like this before,” and I said, “Because you haven’t felt anything like this before.” I actually felt pretty good overall. And once he started doing that, it became clear that he could get a following. Sign up for the American Experience newsletter! Jackie Speier, Aide to Congressman Leo Ryan: Don Harris, who was the NBC reporter, came up to me and Congressman Ryan and handed us these two notes from people that wanted to leave. Where there are no races. On the Run. Christine Miller, Peoples Temple Member (archival, subtitles): We all came here for peace. When we came back, something had happened. They were tailor-made for a political rally. I would like to go. Bryan Kravitz, Peoples Temple Member: I heard Jim Jones talking about equality among races, what it’s like living in California, in the Redwood Valley, the good works that they’re doing. Approximately eighty Jonestown residents, including three of Jim Jones’ sons, were away that day and survived. The word we were getting was that there was an armed encampment. I was in a lot of the meetings where people were spanked or beaten, and I was slapped once, also in a public meeting. Jim said, “Darlin’, you know, today is your day. 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