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It is of course difficult to say whether true crime movies are more powerful than fictional ones, but I personally feel that films linger around in my memory for much longer if I’m aware that they’re rooted in fact, particularly if the facts in question are disturbing ones.

Take Changeling for example – pouting beauty Angelina Jolie plays a single mother whose son disappears. Five months later the corrupt cops produce another similar-looking nine-year-old boy and insist that he is her offspring, but she is adamant that he is not the same child.

Changeling, Angelina Jolie

As a movie plot, it’s harrowing and disturbing, but when you consider that it’s also based on the real case of mother Christine Collins who struggled to get to the bottom of the disappearance of her son in 1928 LA, you have enough fuel for nightmares. I tell you, if one of my cats disappeared and came back as an imposter I’d be totally distraught.

Click here to listen to a fascinating report about this true story.

For me, a fact-based crime movie usually has a much higher impact than a fictional one because I know, (and dwell on the fact) that the crimes depicted have actually happened.

What eats me up is knowing that there’s always the chilling chance that many of these notorious crimes could be repeated…

What do you think? There’ve been countless hideous and extraordinary crimes throughout history, and many have made it onto the big screen. What is the best true crime movie ever?

Heavenly Creatures and Monster are two that had a profound effect on me.

Changeling is showing on Sky Movies Drama today (27th January) at 8pm

Check out loads more on the crime genre here.