‘JFK: What the Doctors Saw’ Review: A Clinical View | ET REALITY


Amid a climate of renewed interest in the assassination of John F. Kennedy (stoked by the media taking advantage of the 60th anniversary of his death to rekindle family debates), Barbara Shearer’s “JFK: What the Doctors Saw” brings some clarity to the conspiratorial noise by focusing on one small piece of the puzzle: the professional opinions of the doctors present in the emergency room of President Parkland Memorial Hospital.

While some documentaries look like summaries from a Wikipedia page, “What the Doctors Saw” (streaming on Paramount+) is more like a question and answer session with Siri. What did the staff observe? An entry wound to Kennedy’s throat. What does that suggest? A bullet entered from the front. Why is that significant? Contradicts the conclusions of the Warren Commission.

I’m willing to bet that viewers drawn to this documentary will have a basic understanding of the story. It’s smart, then, that this film so clearly defines its scope. Instead of dwelling on the actions of Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby, the documentary spends its time on medical analysis, analyzing the inconsistencies between the injuries doctors observed in Dallas and the autopsy report performed in Bethesda.

This approach also has its drawbacks. The memories of those who treated Kennedy in Parkland Trauma Room 1 are remarkably consistent, which is another way of saying that much of this documentary is remarkably repetitive. You will finish the movie accepting that what the doctors saw is crucial. But what all this means for America’s most enduring mystery is no less clear.

JFK: What the doctors saw
Not qualified. Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes. Watch it on Paramount+.

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