I didn’t follow the JonBenet Ramsay story when it dominated the news in 1996. The reports were endless, and the continuous stream of sordid speculation on this (or any) child’s exploitation and murder feels obscene. The story never went away, and the crime remains unsolved. There have been countless tabloid articles, books, and movies recounting, speculating, and imagining what occurred on that Christmas Eve. Netflix has now produced yet another take on the sensationalized mystery, Kitty Green’s Casting JonBenet, a psychodrama that swings between narrative and documentary. JonBenet’s was killer never found, the case was bungled, and the family suffered from years of rumors and accusations. In this attempt to get at the ‘truth,’ the filmmakers have come up with a unique approach: the actors don’t play the roles; the roles play the actors.
The film draws on (mostly) experienced performers . . .