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The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst: Season 1 (2015)
Critic Consensus: Disturbing themes and an engrossing blend of interviews and dramatizations make The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst a docu-series that merits further pursuit.
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News & Interviews for The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst: Season 1
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.
Audience Reviews for The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst: Season 1
Disturbingly real, relentlessly intriguing, and maddeningly enigmatic, The Jinx is another brilliant documentary from director Andrew Jarecki. The film, released as a documentary series with HBO, follows the case of the infamous Robert Durst—a cunning yet obviously troubled man, whose fortune and prestige seemingly enable him to escape justice time and time again. His life reads as a series of primetime specials, all with elusive endings. The Jinx follows the Durst saga, and examines the three murders he has become inextricably linked to- that of his wife, his best friend, and his neighbor. The series is expertly composed and done with both earnestness and also with what appears to be a good faith interest in finding the truth. It’s a mostly even-handed pursuit, featuring interviews with the man himself, the victims in question, Durst family members, and countless others who all have a piece of a complicated jigsaw. Jarecki weaves these interviews with skill and bolsters them with professional dramatization; all portrayed a sequential build-up that leads to an absolutely stunning conclusion. The film is enthralling to the last episode- time seems to come to a halt, as we are transported to the bizarreness of the man, and the tales that seem almost too surreal. The series becomes an experience in and of itself, full of themes of justice, forgiveness, privilege, and hubris. The later speaks to an arrogance that seems to define Durst—albeit not without a cunning sort of charisma. Exceedingly well executed and a thrilling true-crime story. 4.5/5 Stars
The last ten minutes are so disturbing and grotesque that they will leave me thinking about this whole business for a long time, and even though Jarecki's methods are ethically questionable (he withholds important evidence), this is a fascinating documentary that sheds light on something too bizarre to be real.
One of the most shocking and compelling pieces of television I've ever seen.
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