Like all great horror, it is terrible and fascinating.
It occurred in a large cellar beneath a house in a quiet Austrian street.
For twenty four years, the victim was imprisoned and raped repeatedly.
She gave birth to six children. All were denied daylight and freedom. One died.
Part of her nightmare ended today.
Josef Fritzl, 73, pleaded guilty to rape and murder, and was sentenced to life imprisonment. He could be paroled in fifteen years.
In a shock revelation, his daughter, Elizabeth, the mother of his six children, and his primary victim, was in court on Tuesday. She said that she "wanted to be sure that her father was punished for the death of her child".
Fritzl will spend his days in a prison with a substantial psychiatric facility. He will be immediately assessed by a panel of psychiatrists who will assess his psychiatric needs (Good luck, fellas!)
Interestingly, he will be billed directly for all court costs and the costs of therapy for his victims (his children).
In the amazing hour long Austrian press conference on CNN International this morning that immediately followed Fritzl's sentencing, several reporters asked if Fritzl will be permitted to write his "memoirs" and sell them.
The judge questioned, not unfairly, whether Fritzl would actually be interested in writing such memoirs.
It is no wonder that horror movies focus on stories about beasts in cellars and subterranean prisons.
This is where the monsters of the real world lurk. This is where they do their business. This is where they hide their crimes. These dank, lightless places are where perversion propagates.
A strange parallel to this case is that Fritzl's wife, who claims not have known about Fritzl's second family beneath the floor, is named Rosemary.
Rosemary was the name of the partner in crime of another monster who buried his crimes (and kids) in a self-constructed cellar. His name was Fred West.
If Mrs. Rosemary Fritzl was truly totally oblivious (as she claims she was) to the fact that her husband was raising another family beneath the floorboards of her kitchen floor -- for twenty-four years! -- she is undoubtedly one of the stupidest people who ever walked the Earth, and we should shed tears for her pea-sized brain.
If, however, she really did know what was going on (and my money's on that), she's smart, and she'd better get smarter.
A troubling, fascinating detail is that Fritzl will be sharing a cell with another inmate.
What poor, unlucky fuck is going to wake up tomorrow morning and be told that his new cellmate is the fun-loving Josef Fritzl?
The bedtime stories are going to be a knockout!
Stand by for the Josef Fritzl Book, TV, and Film Business.