Beware the Slenderman is HBOs latest documentary that documents the aftermath of two 12-year-old girls stabbing a friend 19 times to please Slenderman. It also looks into the mythos of Slenderman and how it became viral in the first place.
The majority of Beware the Slenderman is about the families of the two girls who committed the crime. They talked about their daughter’s childhoods and the effect this situation has had on them and their family.
It was an interesting angle to take, I can’t imagine what a situation like this would do to a family. However, the way it was shot made me apprehensive. The documentary seems like it is trying to make you feel bad for these girls as if they were the real victims of the crime.
In case you were wondering, no they don’t interview the young girl who got stabbed nor her parents. I would have liked to know their opinions on the matter, but considering the situation I respect their decision to decline the interviews. While Payton “Bella” Leutner has recovered physically, she is still traumatised by the event which isn’t surprising. I wish her the best.
The court decided that the pair would be tried as adults, which means they could be sentenced to 60 years in prison. According to Beware the Slenderman, their lawyers have appealed to try again to move the case into the juvenile court which would mean their sentence will be much shorter. This will be decided later this year.
As I said earlier, also discusses how and why Slenderman became the viral sensation we know. This is the part that I enjoyed the most. While it has since died down, the Slenderman mania was rampant online for a couple of years. In my opinion, this is the best part of Beware the Slenderman. They interview several different people in this segment, one of which was Richard Dawkins.I wasn’t expecting him to be in this, thank you for the pleasant surprise!
Overall, Beware the Slenderman is an alright documentary. I think I had my expectations way too high. It is certainly worth watching, but it isn’t something that you should go out of your way to see. I’m glad I watched it, but I’m not pressing play again anytime soon.