So, The Jinx (full name – The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst) is an HBO miniseries documentary directed by Andrew Jarecki who has previously done a movie that was loosely based on Robert Durst’s life titled All Good Things. The miniseries focuses on Durst’s life and how he has been linked to three deaths – the death of his wife, Kathleen in 1982 (her body has yet to be found till this day), the death of one of his best friends in 2000, Susan Berman in LA (she was shot in the head) and the death and dismembering of his neighbor, Morris Black in 2001 in Galveston, TX.
First of all, Robert Durst is a free man that has never been convicted of killing any of these people in his life which is just amazing to me but we are here about my thoughts on the miniseries. I completely enjoyed it and loved how it was all put together and set up. They start from the very beginning and let you into the life of Durst, starting as a young boy and witnessing his mother’s suicide (which I believe is the root of his problems). There are some reenactions throughout the mini series but they aren’t corny and help in telling the story.
I have to tell you that Robert Durst is an eccentric old man. Actually scratch that, he is a creepy old man. As you watch these stories unfold and feel his unpleasantness emanate through your screen, you will find yourself asking yourself multiple times “wtf??!!”. This story is so bizarre like it can’t be real. During trial for the murder of the neighbor, the way he answers the questions and admits to how he dismembers the body just blew my mind. Like, is this guy for real? Normal people think of calling the cops but his first thought was to dismember a body? Also as an excuse to get away from the notoriety that comes from belonging to a famous family his solution is to live life as a mute woman?? No words.
Clues to him being a tad unbalanced can be seen through out the series. When I first got a background of the story, I wondered why someone who has got away with these things and is now in his 70’s would finally give an interview on something he has never spoken about before. Why dredge up old wounds? I kinda got my answer when in one episode when he was on the lam (one of his many times) he had oodles of cash in his trunk and yet he walked into a grocery store and shoplifts a hoagie. Isn’t that someone that wants to be caught?
Everything leads up to the final episode where the gods must have been smiling on the producers because they stumble across “stuff” that leads to an “oh shit, did that just happen?” moment – this is my attempt at no spoilers. It’s so funny that the last episode was when I realized how Robert Durst had grown on me, there was a point where I actually felt sorry for him and felt everyone should just leave this old man alone.
When he walked into that final interview, I was so nervous for both him and for Andrew Jarecki. For a second, when I felt sorry for him I think I was thinking of the new era of TV were the anti-heroine is king. We know they are terrible but we still root for them (think Walter White, Don Draper, Tony Soprano) until I snapped out of it and remembered this isn’t a fictional show. This is real life and there are real life murders involved.
The summary of everything I am trying to say is do yourself a favor and go binge watch all 6 episodes. It’s like a roller coaster ride that can be quite scary but is exhilarating at the same time. And some may say it’s too soon to tell but this easily already makes my list for one of the best things I have watched this year.
Have you seen this yet? What did you think?