Why Making A Murderer Is So Important In Ways You Wouldn’t Expect
Is it changing the journalistic landscape?
The case of Steven Avery in America has now been written into Netflix folklore, sitting comfortably beside Breaking Bad, Narcos and Jessica Jones. But the new documentary, Making A Murderer, presents something different in a way that viewers may not have already picked up on.
It is a documentary and so it does in fact, document competently the whole life of Steven Avery during his two trials. The first being the infamous 1985 case that saw him given the wrong verdict, the latter being the Teresa Halbach case that has caused much fervour since the documentary was premiered late last year.
Both cases are very curious, the first verdict was wrong from the offset, but the second has left viewers puzzled, could he have done it? And though the main point in this documentary was to bring this case to the fore, it has done something else equally important.
Media publications such as Vice, often release short documentaries that question the American judicial system. The reason why Vice’s documentaries have and still are going wrongfully unnoticed is because they simply aren’t on a mass-media platform.
In a changing landscape, journalism is struggling to find a way to comfort itself without he use of print. Click friendly sites such as Buzzfeed have combated that lack of comfort through writing mostly non-informative content. Vice try but still are only known to their already cult following.
Literature is now, unfortunately, viewed as useless. But a time when it has worked would be through the case of True Story, which later was unsurprisingly made into a film. Journalist, Michael Finkel, originally set out to simply write an article, but given the depth of Christian Longo, he wanted to write a Book.
After Longo was imprisoned Finkel published the book under the name ‘True Story’. It actually was a success the difference between both examples, however, is that ‘True Story’ was released a fair while before the age of documentaries and films took a hold of the lazy consumer.
In all fairness, the mantra of “why bother reading it, when you can watch it?” does work to some extent but not in others. For example, watching Lord of the Rings is nowhere near as good as reading the book – that’s not a subjective matter either, the books are just more detailed. But, cases such like the ones presented in this film in such refined detail, which gives that mantra a fair argument.
A journalist could hack away at a book for years upon years to write something that may be unappreciated. Yet if they were to make a documentary about a case as interesting as this – they will gain the plaudits, they often crave or deserve. Though an issue this could create, is that the art of literature, and the cravings to make a different may be driven away by the taste of Money.