I didn't see the film, but maybe this clip is what you're referring to. At around 3:51, it's being shown to Mick Jagger, played in slo-mo. There is definitely something in Meredith Hunter's hand that looks like a gun. http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=208_1226021428 But I don't know what the author is talking about, because it's visible in the still shot, too, the one he's (sarcastically?) labelled: "Right here, isn't it?" It *is* plainly highlighted against the light-colored vest. What he says is that "McLean characterizes the death of Hunter as a ritualized murder." But check out the guy in the clip at 1:48 (clenching his fists) whom the photographer focuses on for a good minute. After noticing that; then re-reading that verse of American Pie; and knowing that, really, the song that was playing at the time of the murder was Sympathy For The Devil, I couldn't help but think that maybe Don McClean was combining a few different images, including from the perspective of that seriously messed-up dude ~ with "Satan's spell" maybe as much referring to the guy's bad trip as anything else. In any event, I agree. The author's conclusions here don't seem to have any basis.
When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.
~ John Muir
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