On Aug 10th, 2017, Kim Wall, a 30-year-old Swedish Journalist, accompanied eccentric Danish inventor Peter Madsen on his homemade submarine for a trip around Copenhagen harbour.
Several hours later, Danish authorities received a distress call from the submarine. When they arrived, Madsen was alone on the deck of his sinking vessel. Kim Wall was nowhere to be found.
Madsen claimed that he had dropped Wall off safely on an island before the submarine began to take on water. But, as police began to investigate, Madsen's story began to unravel.
The journalist's disappearance sparked one of the most sensational court cases in Danish history. This new Netflix documentary, Into The Deep, details the events that led up to her disappearance.
What Is Into The Deep About?
Into The Deep is an unusual documentary, as it's a documentary inside a documentary. Confusing I know! But let me explain.
In 2016, Australian filmmaker Emma Sullivan began filming a documentary with Peter Madsen. The film was about the Danish inventor's work and his passion for building submarines and space rockets.
In his native Denmark, Peter Madsen is something of a celebrity. A cross between Elon Musk and MacGyver, he's a self-taught engineer who has spent his life building odd and impressive machines.
However, in August 2017 while the film was still being shot, Swedish journalist Kim Wall disappeared after going on a trip with Madsen on his submarine. Little did the documentary maker know that her film was about to become a true-crime documentary.
Is Into The Deep Worth Watching?
The film provides an unprecedented look at Madsen in the months leading up to the disappearance of Kim Wall. As well as tracks the impact of the case on those who worked with him at Rocket Madsen Space Lab (RML).
On a superficial level, the documentary is a fascinating study of obsession. On a deeper level, it's a chilling portrayal of how charismatic and intelligent people can also be incredibly dangerous.
While making the film, director Emma Sullivan had unrestricted access to Madsen. This gives the audience an eerily intimate look at the man. The viewer gets to see him in a variety of situations, from interviews and work in his garage, to more personal moments when he is giving his thoughts about life directly to the camera.
What's particularly chilling is how open Madsen is about his dark thoughts and fantasies. It's clear that even before the disappearance of Kim Wall, Madsen was a deeply disturbed individual.
If you're a fan of true crime documentaries, Into The Deep is a must-watch.
**Warning: Spoilers ahead!**
At this point in the review, I'm going to talk about key points in the film. If you don't want to know what happens, I suggest you stop reading now!
I watched this documentary only knowing the basics of what had happened. Which I think is the best to go into the film. It makes the events that unfold all the more shocking.
Who Is Peter Madsen?
Peter Madsen is a Danish inventor who first gained fame in 2008 for his successful launch of Copenhagen Suborbitals, a non-profit organization dedicated to building and launching amateur rockets. In 2014, Madsen founded Rocket Madsen Space Lab (RML) to build an affordable rocket.
On August 10th, 2017, Swedish journalist Kim Wall boarded Peter Madsen's homemade submarine, UC3 Nautilus, for an interview.
The next day, when Wall failed to return home, her boyfriend raised the alarm and a massive search began. Ten days later, the police found Wall's dismembered body near where the submarine had sunk.
Investigators believe that Madsen deliberately sunk UC3 Nautilus to hide evidence of his crimes.
When asked by the police about Kim Wall's disappearance, according to Madsen, he had dropped the journalist off on land before his submarine began to sink.
When parts of her body were found it became clear that Madsen was lying. He later claimed that Wall had been killed when he lost his grip on the submarine's hatch cover, which he was holding open for her, and it hit her on the head, causing her skull to fracture.
However, clues to the case were contained in the footage recorded by Emma Sullivan during the filming of her documentary. The footage was used as evidence against Madsen. Showing how the inventor had planned and carried out the murder of Kim Wall.
In April 2018, Peter was convicted of killing Swedish journalist Kim Wall, and sentenced to life imprisonment.
If you're interested in true crime documentaries or fascinated by mad scientists/inventors, Into The Deep is worth watching but beware-it's not for the faint-hearted!