Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Premiering today, December 18, on Netflix is a 3 episode long documentary on the hunt for the murderer of Jun Lin. While the documentary is completely fascinating and keeps you at the edge of your seat, there's an interview near the end of episode 3 with Jun Lin's best friend, Dong Dong Xu, which is what stuck with me the most. "The really sad thing is talking about "the killer" and nobody has ever remembered Jun Lin. Doesn't seem fair at all to my friend. He doesn't deserve that. "The killer" didn't just kill a person...but also destroyed an entire family's hope. People don't understand. In the Chinese culture, it's always the son that carries the responsibility to take care of the parents...when they.....when they become old. Now it's gone. And it's not fair." He is, of course, absolutely correct. We don't remember the names of the victims. Just the killers. Maybe remembering the victims is more frightening. Maybe concentrating on the killers and those details about those killers will give us enough information to avoid becoming a victim ourselves. I'm not sure why we don't concentrate on the victims more.
So yes, I'm writing this review on the story of a killer. A killer who took the life of Jun Lin. Out of respect to Jun Lin, I'll not use any names or likeness of the killer.
Jun Lin's father, Darrin Lin, crying at his son's funeral.
This film shows the craziness of the details that not only the killer was following in his crime spree but also how regular people using the internet were able to track him down. I've never seen anything like this before and I pray it's never repeated. The documentary is filmed in what is really a timeline of events as it unfolded. It's done very well. I'd already been aware of the case and the outcome. But the film really "took me there" if you get my meaning. It keeps you tied to your seat. Watching for the 3 hours it took, it was worth it to stay in that loop.
Many animal rights activists seeing the first videos of the killer torturing and killing kittens is what started this in the first place. But even those people question how their actions could be said to have stopped this killer............or did they push him into killing? This delves into their actions and conversations with each other. It tells of their ordeal with trying to get the police to understand what they were seeing.
The police didn't listen to these activists. It may or may not have had any change in what went down. But I do try to think about how many hoaxes, lies, and bullshit calls they have to deal with on a day to day basis in addition to the real calls. Real calls about real shit. And real calls about real bullshit. Once they were aware, they really were able to do the impossible and find him. Even that seems like a thriller of a movie plot and less like a real-life case.
Mom of the killer.................she's wrapped up in his lies. She believes what he says. I get where she's coming from. It's hard to believe the worst is possible about our children without reflecting on how we must have contributed to that personally. How did I as his mom fuck him up so bad that he became a murderer? What did I do wrong? How am I responsible? At some point, she's going to have to accept it what he's done......or maybe she won't. She's another victim but she's not really aware of it and it's very clearly conveyed in the film.
The film left me feeling like we should all be doing more. This now feels like a mission we should all be in on, helping to solve more crimes when we can instead of expecting the police to do it all. It's our duty to ourselves, our families, communities, etc.
Jun Lin and his amazing smile! RIP
Here's the trailer for the documentary.
I give this 3.8 out of 5 stars.