The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst

The Jinx

The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst is a six-part HBO documentary about the life of Robert Durst, a member of a wealthy New York City real estate dynasty. Durst was suspected by many of being responsible for the 1982 disappearance of Kathleen Durst, his first wife. He was later suspected of murdering his close friend Susan Berman in 2000 and was tried and found not guilt in the 2001 murder of his neighbor Morris Black. The documentary revisits these three cases and includes commentary from Durst along with friends and family members of the victims, investigators, and lawyers.

The reenactments and a few other aspects of the documentary were a bit tacky but I thought it was very engrossing overall. I highly recommend The Jinx if you’re interested in true crime, the justice system, or psychology.


Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets by David Simon

Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets

Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets chronicles the year David Simon spent shadowing a shift of the Baltimore Police Department’s homicide unit. Covering 1988, the book was written after Simon had spent four years as a journalist covering the local crime beat for The Baltimore Sun.

I’d set aside time and made plans to write this review on several occasions but could never quite get my thoughts and words together. To be honest, I had a feeling of ambivalence towards saying that Homicide is a good book. Homicide is pretty much about the investigation of deaths, murders, assaults, and other serious acts of violence over the course of a year. The factual accounting of crimes combined with dark humor and good storytelling made it very easy to lose myself in the story. And then I’d remember that these weren’t just creative stories that a gifted writer had simply made up. These stories that I found entertaining were actually real accounts of the violent end of a human being’s life.