It’s hard to make a good true crime documentary. You have to investigate the story, analyze it, make some alternative inquiries, interview people involved in the case, offer different versions of the truth that was told in its day… Or, as in ‘The Ax Backpacker’, the Netflix documentary, you can do none of this and leave half of the things untold. At least that is what Kai, the protagonist of the same, and his family affirm.
Smash, smash, su-mash!
‘The backpacker with the axe’ could have been a dissertation on the power of the media, the importance of mental health or fame in an America lacking in morals. Instead, he prefers to focus on Kai, his rise to fame and his subsequent fall, without further analysis of it. It is something that several viewers have complained about, but the brother of the protagonist jumps to the neck directly.
When the production team approached us, they told my family that they wanted to shed light on what had happened and help him. There are still many questions, but I have a feeling that they made the documentary to sell it and to sensationalize it, instead of facing the brutal truth of the court ruling. Even though we got mad before he went to the United States, and even though we don’t talk anymore, I still care about him, and I hate that he didn’t get a fair trial. I am disappointed that this documentary did not highlight any of the important issues in this case.
If you haven’t seen ‘The backpacker with the ax’, just know that at the end of the documentary Kai claims to have been raped by his fatal victimbut at no time is his word investigated or given, despite the fact that during the rest of the footage nothing supports the theory that the homicidal instinct suddenly entered him. Kai himself speaks from jail (which is already more than he does in the documentary) focusing more on the fact that he hasn’t earned a dollar from the film.
Netflix is making a movie about my life story before I got arrested, but they won’t pay me anything for it… If someone made a movie about OJ Simpson’s football career, they would make money from it. Guys who kill and rape women make money from their fame before arrest, but I saved women from being murdered and killed a rapist, so Netflix mercilessly exploits me. What the fuck?
The controversy is served: Is everything worth for a true crime Or will we have a ‘Making a murderer’ based on Kai in a few years? Who knows. The only thing that is clear is that, since its premiere, his Fundraiser to pay his legal expenses has gone up by 5000 dollars. It may not have been as clear as they claim on Netflix…