The story of America as seen through the eyes of the former Secretary of Defense under President John F. Kennedy and President Lyndon Johnson, Robert McNamara.
Documentary filmmaker Errol Morris investigates the case of a man who became an authority on capital punishment, but was discredited when he got involved on the wrong side of a court case. Leutcher, a meek man whose appearance belies his grim expertise, develops what he says is a more effective electric chair. Before long he's in demand from officials who want his opinions on other kinds of execution. But when called to aid the case of an accused Holocaust denier, Leutcher's problems begin.
In part an adaptation of cosmologist Stephen Hawking's popular book about his theories of the universe, this documentary also shows Hawking's daily life as he deals with the ALS that renders him virtually immobile and unable to speak without the use of computer. Hawking's friends, family, former classmates and peers are interviewed about not only his theories but the man himself. Director Errol Morris uses creative graphics to visually illustrate Hawking's complex ideas.
Early Errol Morris documentary intersplices random chatter he captured on film of the genuinely eccentric residents of Vernon, Florida. A few examples? The preacher giving a sermon on the definition of the word "Therefore," and the obsessive turkey hunter who speaks reverentially of the "gobblers" he likes to track down and kill.