The Dupont family made a name for themselves, and quite a large amount of money, in the gunpowder business, so it was darkly ironic that John Eleuthere Dupont, a member of one of "America's Royal families" found his undoing by doing terrible, deadly business with a pistol and three bullets.
"For all who draw the sword, will die by the sword," Jesus said, and although Dupont did not physically die on January 26, 1996, the day he took David Schultz's life, a large part of the man who claimed to be Jesus around the same time he killed Schultz surely did.
He was psychotic, and on drugs, and he had just killed a man who had become one of his few friends, and he would soon lose a lot of the abundant freedom and good life that his inherited fortune could bring.
Festival audiences from Cannes to Toronto have been given a sneak peek at "Foxcatcher", the movie about the murder, and the relationship between the Olympic gold medal winning Schultz brothers, who take up residence at Dupont's estate near Philadelphia after being invited to be part of 'team Foxcatcher' and to be sponsored by Dupont's vast assets. In the movie, as in reality, Dupont goes on to kill the older brother, in a freakish turn of events that creates powerful suspense and expresses human foibles in an impactful and terribly sad way.
These lucky festival viewers have been so stirred by the movie, they have given it an early Oscar buzz, and it promises to have the Dupont/Schultz story circulating in much wider circles pretty soon.
The movie is directed by Bennett Miller, whose previous films include all-American award attractive tales like "Capote" and "Moneyball".
"Foxcatcher" is another stranger-than-fiction story, that while leave you wanting to understand more, will also leave you with a sort of compelling sadness when you realize few answers will be satisfying as an explanation for the crazed real-life events.
The film, like Dupont himself, will go from eccentric and weird, to full-on dangerous, and it brings out the best acting to date from Channing Tatum who plays Mark Schultz, and Steve Carell, who literally disappears into the demented role of Dupont. Mark Ruffalo plays David Schultz and he delivers the outstanding performance you have come to expect from the talented actor.
After the terrible murder, many close to Dupont talked about watching him descend into madness for some time, and feeling helpless to be able to do anything about it. The movie will leave you feeling that way, too. You will connect with Tatum, and even the disturbed Carell at times, and you will be left lost at the end, like David Schultz's wife Nancy, who ran to her husband after the shooting, just in time to have him die in her arms.
In December 2010 guards at the Pennsylvania State Correctional Institution - Laurel Highlands found Dupont dead in his cell of natural causes. Right after he committed the murder, he locked himself in his estate for two days, and negotiated with police. They caught him after they shut off his power, and he came outside to try and fix his heater. Dupont could not stand to be so cold, and so isolated, no matter all the money he had.
Having all that money truly did not bring Dupont happiness, as the audience for the movie will surely see; in fact, in the end, it brought him nothing but loneliness and grief.
The movie is set to be released in theaters across the country on November 14th.