Massachusettes engineer Fred E. Leuchter Jr took it upon himself to improve the quality of the electric chairs in various States of the US, prompted by humanitarian motives: to kill, not torture the executees. His dedication and success generated good word of mouth and he was asked to improve other execution equipment, from the gallows to gassing. This was the thing that motivated Ernst Zundel, a rabid neo-Nazi and revisionist, to commission Fred to go to Auschwitz. Inadequately qualified for the task, Leuchter innocently but erroneously concluded that the Auschwitz gassings never occurred. But Leuchter soon found his fame turning to infamy, and the word of mouth got bad. Work was not coming, and one job was even cancelled half way through, leaving him stuck with half of an electrocution setup, and Fred a bewildered man.
 

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A portrait of the life of the infamous American execution device designer.

Mr. Death: the Rise and Fall of Fred A Leuchter Jr is the latest feature documentary from Errol Morris whose previous films include The Thin Blue Line, A Brief History of Time and Fast Cheap and Out of Control. Mr Death is Leuchter Jr, who prided himself on his engineering skills in being able to design and make more efficient methods of execution for various prisons in the United States. Because of this expertise he was commissioned by Canadian neo-Nazi Ernst Zundel to go to Auschwitz to get evidence that there were in fact no gas chambers there. Morris doesn`t set out to prove that Leuchter was anything other than a very ordinary man with a degree of hubris about the one area in life that gave him any sort of recognition who was naive more than anything else......