Based on the true story of Boston’s most notorious serial killer, Boston Strangler follows two journalists (Keira Knightley and Carrie Coon) bravely put their lives on the line in the quest to uncover the truth behind a series of brutal murders.
I often find myself suckered into an intriguing investigative journalism narrative based on historical events — especially those I am unfamiliar with. And we all know I am a big fan of strong female protagonists overcoming battling sexism.
Especially when the protagonists are tenaciously portrayed by Knightley and Coon. The two are dynamic forces and large reason why I stayed glued to my screen. Although Coon’s arc seems to have ended up on the cutting room floor (a real shame, if I do say so myself), Knightley does a solid job commanding the screen as a woman unafraid of going against all odds for justice.
Despite its premise and fantastic lead performances, Boston Strangler is a very forgettable narrative heavily influenced by the gritty (and not well lit) storytelling of Fincher’s 2007 film, Zodiac. But instead of trying to go head to head with other true crime giants, Boston Stranger plays out like…the more boring younger cousin.
Its slow moving, clunky script takes little risks and avoids any thrilling elements that could have added more suspense and fear. In other words, what could have been a gripping and robust crime narrative, Boston Strangler plays out like a vanilla, “made for tv” flick.
Forgettable in the streaming universe but engaging enough for a night in.