Executive producer Shawn Levy brings the hit show ‘Unsolved Mysteries‘ back to life on the streaming service Netflix with a six-part volume one. Like the original show, it touches on various unsolved crimes and their lack of a satisfying conclusion.
One episode deals with UFO sightings that affected an entire family who all claim they have nothing to gain from coming forward. Five of the episodes deal with mysterious deaths that either have not been solved or the police have come to some other foregone conclusion that does not satisfy the family. We watch heartbreaking interviews with friends, family, and acquaintances as they plead for some sort of clue that could give them closure on the whereabouts of their loved ones.
The episode “Missing Witness” was particularly enthralling. It is about the disappearance of a young, single-mother who claimed to have witnessed the murder of her step-father at the hands of her mom. Shortly after making a recorded confession, she vanished into thin air and her sisters are pleading for information regarding her disappearance.
The quality of the show is top-notch in its production values. The crew does an excellent job of filming, bringing some very intriguing crimes and presenting us with the facts and figures to make us feel empathy for the victims and their families. No stone was left unturned, especially when ut came to the high quality of the program.
However, while the original show avoided exploitation, this version of the show does delve into this just a little bit. The original always did a good job of showing all of the players from the victims, their loved ones, the investigators, and then present the facts of the case for you to decide. While this one follows the format, it is in the way those involved speak. You can tell whoever was doing the questioning asked the most provocative question to get the responses they desired.
One thing I missed from that did not carry over for this “reboot” is the narrator. The original version had dynamite actors like Raymond Burr, Karl Malden, Robert Stack, Virginia Madsen, and Dennis Farina (the last three of whom I watched). This one just shows scenes of the interviews with no narrator, juxtaposed with scenery from the locations of the crimes. This was a mistake as it was something that made Unsolved Mysteries unique, but now it felt like just another Netflix true-crime documentary.
There is a second batch of six episodes on the way, so time will tell if they correct this course and find a decent narrator to explore these crimes and the lives they have affected.
Check out the trailer below:
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