The law is death

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German title The law is death
Original title Messenger of Death
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1988
length 91 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director J. Lee Thompson
script Rex Burns ,
Paul Jarrico
production Pancho Kohner
music Robert O. Ragland
camera Gideon Porath
cut Peter Lee Thompson

The law is death (Original title: Messenger of Death ) is an American thriller from 1988 . Directed by J. Lee Thompson .


In Colorado , the three wives of the Mormon Orville Beecham and their children are shot dead by a murderer. The next scene shows the police chief Barney Doyle, who wants to become mayor of Denver, the reporter Garret Smith and the entrepreneur Homer Foxx discussing the murder case. Smith went to research in the country and met Beecham, who was housed in a police cell for his own safety. He suspects his father Willis, an excommunicated Mormon and prophet of a sect, of murder. For his part, Willis suspects his brother Zeenas of murder.

With the help of the local journalist Jastra Watson, Garret Smith drives to Zeenas. Zeenas lives on property that the Colorado Water Company has an interest in. Zeenas suspects Orville because Willis preaches blood revenge. The common hallmark of the two brothers is the avenging angel.

After Orville is released from police custody, an argument breaks out between him and Zenas. In a subsequent shootout , Zeenas and Willis die. Garret Smith realizes that the Colorado Water Company has hired a killer to take advantage of the family quarrel. It turns out that Homer Foxx hired the killer. Smith poses at a party with Foxx. He then shoots himself.


"Conventional, easy-to-see detective film, for which the dark, irritating idea of ​​the religious war only serves as a pretext for a commercial thriller."


The film was shot primarily in Colorado . It grossed just over $ 3 million in US cinemas .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. The law is death. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed September 30, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  2. Filming Locations on
  3. box office results on