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The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst: Season 1 (2015)
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It's the ultimate in reality television... But Andrew Jarecki accomplished even more... He created a new version of true-crime television, exploring an unresolved case in a series centered on interviews with the eccentric, self-destructive prime suspect.
The series marshals the full complement of documentary techniques... to recreate the "life and deaths" of its subject while maintaining a certain cautious detachment.
To be truly judged, The Jinx has to be watched in its entirety. But the first two episodes earn it the benefit of the doubt.
The Jinx very much looks like a masterwork of the true crime genre. Its first two chapters establish an iron grip. The final four can't come fast enough.
Robert Durst comes off here as smart, which also could be seen as calculating. His résumé suggests he has covered some bad road, and while no one would mistake him for a poor little rich boy based on this film, it's easy to understand how he has survived.
The Jinx fascinates. Even though I know there's unlikely to be a real period at the end of this story, I'm curious to see where Jarecki puts the ellipsis.
The Jinx literally became transcendent in the final half, with each episode ending in such a compelling and unbelievable fashion.
Durst emerges as a slippery, damaged and manipulative figure, and it is hard to tell whether his involvement is driven by a desire to control the story or to surrender to it, to lie or to confess, to be relieved of his fictions or to perpetuate them.
If you have any interest in true-crime stories, I'd imagine The Jinx will satisfy your craving sumptuously. If, like me, you're skeptical of the genre, The Jinx might make you rethink the worthiness of it. Me, I'm now a convert.
It features all the tropes of the "true crime" format, but takes it to the next level with an unusually elegant narrative and slick editing, elevating a genre that has, more often than not, been defined by risibly low-budget recreations of real crimes.
Audience Reviews for The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst: Season 1
Mar 30, 2021I deducted a star bc the lawyer in episode 4 had a whistle when he talked and I had to watch it on mute with subtitles. I feel so sorry for jury's that have to listen to him, just so irritating. Other than that this series was incredible.
Jun 07, 2020A documentary series of intervention, which definitely finds its place in the documentary history, no matter whether the filmmakers was on purpose or not. A walking-free "murderer", who came to you and asked for an interview, was finally caught again because of his murmurings in the washroom. And the trial has "inevitably" been suspended because of the pandemic...
Feb 23, 2020Mind blowing, the final episode is beyond my immediate comprehension, not because I could not understand it, but because of how it unvails, so dramtically, the truth, after 30 plus years. How a life, played out so publicly, in front of everyones eyes, goes from elusive, full of questions, to epoxsed in one single dramtic moment. Even the director, film crew & interviewer, who warm to the lead, and me as a viewer, can see some truth, but yet we are all left with niggling questions, until that one single deffining moment at the end, when the lead also becomes aware, and when you just know the truth, immediately, so abruptly and leaving the viewer totally aware of how a physcopath functions, ever so deeply. Without a doubt one of the single most dramtic real live exposuer events I have ever witnessed.. this is beyond a scale of 5...
Sep 27, 2019So good. It grabbed a hold from minute 1 and didnt stop. Had to watch it all! Amazing documentary! Superb job!!!!
Jul 15, 2019Awesome documentary... very solid pacing... excellent ending!
Jan 20, 2019Intense and scary investigation of several murders presumably committed by New York real estate mogul Robert Durst. The last episode, when we clearly see and hear his inadvertent admissions ("I killed them all") gave me some chills. It also shows how money talk, and if you have millions at your bank account, you have much more chances to get away with several murders. Sad.
Sep 25, 2018The ending is one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen and elevates the whole series.
May 22, 2018Absolutely unbelievable from beginning to end. The last moments of the final episode will give you chills.
Apr 19, 2018one of the best crime docudramas out there. The show keeps us involved, swaying this way then that, never becomes preachy or moralistic and the chief character is full of dark, charismatic menace. I was never sure where i was with him. He is plausible, honest, blunt, emotionless, ruthless and vulnerable. The final minute of the final show, is unexpected and haunting. You will never guess, unless you are stupidly sharp, the final reveal. There is one small clue in an earlier episode but i got this retrospectively. Great viewing, and the story has not ended yet; it is likely to run and run in real life and offer some more shockingly truthful circumstances.
Apr 04, 2018the first documentary ever that has caught a murder on their own lie. amazing to witness the pathological liar through the episodes with his own lies and then boom! lie exposed at the very last moment. truly remarkable what the team has achieved.