I Am A Killer

I Am A Killer

Netflix Series
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8.8

Great

8.4

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I Am A Killer is an incredibly thought-proking documentary series that looks at ten inmates currently on death row and the circumstances that led up to their crimes. Nobody is pleading innocent here but their stories and those of their victims make for a compelling watch. 

I Am A Killer is a documentary on Netflix that profiles ten convicted murders currently sitting on death row in the US. Each episode focuses on one specific inmate, all of whom willing admit that they killed somebody. There are no innocent pleas here!

However, this is a series with a difference. It isn't just gratuitous details on murder for the sake of it. What I Am A Killer does very well is give a full 360° picture of the murder. The background of the killer is explored, how they were raised, how the events unfolded etc… Then there are additional interviews with lawyers and case prosecutors as well as family members of both the victim and the perpetrator.

So what you end with is a more comprehensive look at not just why somebody killed, but how they, as human beings, got to the point in life where it was their only option. It highlights serious flaws in the system where children slip through the cracks. And in almost every case, the inmates had awful childhoods. Most were born and raised by drug addicts or alcoholics. They were left to run wild and generally were unwanted and neglected.


Sadly, there is a certain inevitability in the way their lives turned out. And, oddly this does evoke a certain level of sympathy, in some cases. Case in point is James Robertson who was first arrested at 12-years-old. By the age of 17, he was sentenced to 10 years for burglary and aggravated assault.

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But unable to follow any rules in prison he spent most of the time in fights. That led to more time getting added on to his sentence as well as years spent in solitary. In a desperate bid to get out of that part of the prison, he decided to murder his cellmate. Which he did. And all so he could demand death row. It was a means to an end.

Don't think that this is some sort of ‘poor me' documentary. I Am A Killer does an incredible job of balancing the stories. Your sympathy for some of the inmates is far outweighed by the stories of the victim's families. But it is fair and thought-provoking. Nothing is ever black and white and the circumstances of each case are compelling and engaging. But they are also dark and sad and you may need to find a good comedy to watch after it.

Good

  • Highly Engaging
  • Well Balanced
  • Thought-provoking

Bad

  • May Be Too Sympathetic To The Killers
8.8

Great

2 Comments

  1. I have watched MANY of these Shows/Documentaries and on EVERY SINGLE one of them I notice that after the conviction years down the line when they interview the convicted the Lawyers, the Judge, the DA, or whoever that we’re trying to convict the convicted when the convicted speaks on how they have changed not one of those judges, lawyers, or Das believe them or have anything positive to say about the convicted NOT ONE SINGLE ONE!! And they’ll say look at them they look like this or that, have you been to prison?! Those people have to become THINGS literally animalistic THINGS in order to survive in there so when you see them again years down the line of course they don’t seem like they’ve changed for the better they have to become monsters to survive, you interview anyone of them and they will tell you the same thing!!

    Reply
    • What you said is true. However, what do you propose? We need to protect society. Prisons are meant to be both a punishment and for a chance to reform (get off drugs, alcohol, learn something.) The prisoners are in there because they did terrible crimes when out in society. It is already costing the taxpayers in the USA up to $70,000 per year per prisoner according to VERA. 95% of prisoners are returned to society, but about 2/3 of them are arrested for a new crime within 3 years of being released. I’m not sure what the solution is. My sympathies lie with the victims and their families.

      Reply

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