Stressed about the election? COVID? Midterms and upcoming finals? Is the sun coming down earlier making you feel gloomy? The only magic pill for monsters is true crime documentaries. Here is a list of some of the top must-watch documentaries this year.
Have you seen them all?
1) The Innocence Files is a nine-part docu-series. Each episode features a different conviction that has been overturned because of the Innocence Project. The Innocence Project is the same organization that overturned the Central Park Five. They use DNA evidence to look back into crimes to expose how the criminal just system can be very flawed.
2. Tell Me Who I Am is about a man named Alex Lewis who woke up from a three-month coma after a motorcycle accident. Having lost his memory, his twin brother helps fill in all the cracks. The problem is, his brother omits all the trauma and sexual abuse they lived through as kids, in hopes of giving him a fresh start. In the documentary, however, Alex learns what really happened.
3. Mommy Dead and Dearest is about Gypsy Rose Blanchard and her mother Dee Dee. Dee Dee is convinced her daughter has leukemia and muscular dystrophy, but she was actually perfectly fine. She likely had Munchausen syndrome by proxy, so she wanted everyone to think Gypsy was sick. Gypsy eventually was pushed over the edge and went to the extreme.
4. Out of Thin Air involves two men going missing in a small Icelandic town. Neither bodies nor any real evidence are found. Despite all this, six people are convicted of the murders. None of them did it. What they had to endure as police were trying to get them to admit they did do it is insane.
5. The thin blue line is about Randall Dale Adams. He was put on death row for killing a police officer. PLOT TWIST but he didn’t do it! 12 years after being sentenced, and a year after this film came out he was released. A big portion is from the footage shown in the film.
6. First and Last follow some select inmates in a Georgia jail. In it, you see the first and last days of these people’s sentences, how much they change, and life on the outside.
7. There’s Something Wrong with Aunt Diane tells the story of Diane Schuler, who was driving home from vacation. She crashes into an oncoming car, killing herself and the seven others on board. Diane was known as a perfect mother, but she had a secret. At the time of her death, her blood alcohol was twice the legal limit, and had a high level of THC in her blood. This is just the beginning.
8. Tales of the Grim Sleeper dives into the question of how a serial killer can avoid detection for 20 years. Lonnie Franklin Jr murdered 10 women of color in LA. Franklin allowed 14 years in between murders to be found. It doesn’t go deep into the crimes themselves, it more features how the capture took so long.
9. Amanda Knox is a college student that wants to travel abroad for a semester. This goal is knocked over when she is charged with murder twice for killing her roommate. She was acquitted on both charges, but it didn’t help with the avalanche of negative media coverage and the appeals she lived through.
10. Long Shot defines the word luck. Juan Catalan is arrested for a murder he didn’t do. He needs an alibi but what’s his? That he attended a Dodgers game that night. The hard part is proving that he was actually there. The only thing standing between freedom and death sentence was Curb Your Enthusiasms star, Larry David.