Thursday, August 13, 2020
TV Murder Mystery Worth Watching During This Pandemic Pause
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Monday, July 27, 2020
 

BY CRYSTAL THURSTON

 If you love real life murder mysteries, “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” is a doozy.

 The so-called “Golden State Killer” committed at least 13 murders, more than 50 rapes, and over 100 burglaries in California during the 1970s and ‘80s.  And no one could find him.

 “I’ll be Gone in the Dark” reveals the true story of the search to find him based on the book of the same title by Michelle McNamara, the wife of comic Patton Oswald. Decades after the crimes, writer McNamara felt an intense obsession to track down this violent predator. 

As a girl, McNamara was enthralled by Agatha Christie novels.  Like Christie, she wanted to gather all the clues that might lead to discovering the killer. She analyzed evidence that even the police had ignored. For example, she researched a pair of gold inscribed cuff links that were stolen from one of the murder victims and found them on eBay, tracing down the owners. 

The documentary has two intense levels - the search for the killer and the equally emotional story of McNamara herself and the stress that she put upon herself and her family. She admits to herself on tape, “The case dragged me under quickly. Curiosity turned to clawing hunger.” This excellent documentary draws you completely into both stories.The director, Academy Award nominee Liz Garbus, uses fascinating real-life footage of the victims emotionally describing the crimes against them while also revealing the lasting effects these crimes had upon their lives. One husband was shocked hearing his wife describing her attack since he had blocked out the whole thing even though he was with her that night.

The documentary reveals the experience of these harrowing real-life incidents and explores the dark motives of such evil. It’s fascinating.

It’s currently running on HBO as a six-part Documentary series

 


 

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