It was late. I was surfing through random Netflix instant recommendations, just before I go to bed, like an idiot, when I came across this. I watched the first 15 minutes, paused it, and thought, my wife has to see this.
The next night, we watched it. Not one pause.
I considered including the trailer here, but frankly, I preferred knowing nothing about it and watching it cold. I recommend you do as well.
What first grabbed my attention was the style and editing. I’m almost never interested in the kind of true crime pap that gets featured on America’s Most Wanted and the like. It just doesn’t appeal to me. People are shit: I get the point. The Imposter, however, is filmed like a film. They turned a documentary into a movie, narrated by the people who experienced it, featuring reenactments done dramatically by a film director and crew.
From a writing perspective, the story is told linearly… sort of. There is a “what the fuck?!” moment at least ever 10 minutes, constantly turning the story in new directions. Information is very delicately leaked on an as-needed basis, presumably so you don’t draw judgements.
This is a fascinating, riveting piece of story telling.
Had this been a work of fiction, you’d never buy it. However, with the actual people telling it, you can’t stop watching it. It’s like the dumbest train and car wreck ever documented. And along with being a compelling story, it’s a testament to the fact that people are stupid. Really, really, mind-blowingly fucking stupid. Like almost everyone is fucking really fucking stupid. Wow, people are dumb.
For more, including the trailer, here’s the official Imposter site.