Whispers From A Shallow Grave (2007) – By Brian Morton

 The murder case of Linda Sobeck captured the national headlines in 1995 and a new DVD release from Tempe Video takes us behind the headlines, and gets a look at the real drama behind the crime.

Whispers From A Shallow Grave is probably the most unique true crime movie that I’ve seen. The story is cobbled together from police interviews, court testimony and diary entries, and is told, in the movie by Linda herself. We see the events the lead up to her death, from both her perspective and her murderers, and it’s all done through the guise of Linda testifying at her own murder trial. The story here (in case you’ve never heard of it), is pretty cut and dried. Linda Sobeck, a former L.A. Raiders cheerleader turned model and actress, went on a modeling job with photographer Charles Rathbun, it was a trip that she would never return from. Rathbun raped, killed and buried Linda in a shallow grave in a California forest. After being caught, Rathbun changed his story at least three times before eventually being convicted and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Whispers From A Shallow Grave implies that Rathbun killed more women than just Sobeck, which may be true, I’m not a crime reporter, but since the movie purports to be taken from factual data, I have to believe that it’s true. If you enjoy a great true crime story, and aren’t faint of heart, then Whispers From A Shallow Grave is a great movie, if you are a little squeamish about seeing the crime, then you might find yourself hiding your eyes on more than one occasion during the movie. I’m giving Whispers From A Shallow Grave three and a half out of four cigars, because by having the victim tell her own story, this movie really takes on a life of it’s own and draws you in right from the beginning and, while you’re not surprised about what happens, it doesn’t take away any of the horror of this real life atrocity! You can get a copy for yourself by heading over to Tempe Video, and I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed…well, maybe with the final verdict, but that’s all. So, until next time, when I’ll tell you about the movie they’re making about my real life…it’s four hours of me sitting on the couch watching movies…remember that the best movies are bad movies.