When I was given the chance to read Hippie Cult Leader: The Last Words of Charles Manson before its release, I couldn’t say “Yes!” fast enough. My love of horror films has naturally developed into a fascination with real life horror stories, particularly serial killers, and over the years nothing has interested me more than a good documentary on one of the darkest crimes in recent history. Many people will agree that Charles Manson and his so-called family of followers are one of the biggest stories to ever shock the world, and their blood-soaked legacy will live on for a very long time.
Many books and documentaries have been made which focus on Charlie and his family over the years, but what this book offers is a different perspective. What if Charles Manson wasn’t an evil dictator? Could it be possible that he didn’t order his family members to kill those victims? Maybe the whole ‘Helter Skelter’ theory was an elaborate fabrication developed just to send a man to prison? James Buddy Day presents
James Buddy Day admits his heart started racing when he first heard Charles Manson profess his innocence.
It just seemed so surreal.
Granted, there probably wasn’t much about the Calgary filmmaker and author’s year-long relationship with one of the most notorious human beings on earth that wasn’t surreal. But it was the early days of Day’s phone conversations with the infamous cult leader and criminal. The calls started to come after Day sent him a letter, which included his personal phone number. Manson would make collect calls from California State Prison at odd hours in the day. Day never knew when they would be coming, but had told Manson that he wanted to give the man convicted of being the architect of the horrifying Tate-LaBianca murders the opportunity to “set the record straight.”
What followed was a bit of a cat-and-mouse game at first.