Dinosaur 13 Review

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When paleontologist Pete Larson uncovered the remains of the largest T-Rex ever found in the South Dakota badlands, it should be the crowning glory of his career. But as this documentary records, the result was a bitter legal battle.


In 1990, in the Black Hills of Dakota, paleontologists unearthed Sue, only the 13th Tyrannosaurus rex fossil skeleton ever discovered and by far the most complete. Thanks to political-financial shenanigans, this career-making find led to a face-off between the government, a Native American landowner and an ambitious district attorney. Lead fossil-finder Peter Larson wound up facing jail even as the price on Sue’s bones inflated from $5,000 to over eight million. Todd Douglas Miller’s fascinating, moving, infuriating true story is shot through with enthusiasm and awe for the prehistoric past even as it chronicles a truly bizarre legal footnote.

Like The Cover and Man On Wire, this doc comes clad in the garb of a thriller. And a heck of a good one at that.

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