Review: Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich

Here are our first impressions of the trendy documentary series

Still from the 'Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich' documentary

The docuserie tells of billionaire Jeffrey Epstein's ties to the sex trafficking network of women. / Photo: youtube.com/Netflix

LatinamericanPost| Juliana Rodriguez Pabón

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Leer en español: Reseña: Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich

A week ago, Netflix launched the documentary miniseries Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich. The miniseries consists of four chapters and it follows in detail the multiple investigations around Jeffrey Epstein, financier and millionaire recognized by celebrities, who died last year. This documentary has given a lot to talk about, exposing not only Epstein and his network of sex trafficking in women, but also suggesting that other millionaire men participated in this horror. It also accommodates conspiracy theories about his death and makes a very rigorous study of what happened on his island in Florida and with the multiple investigations that were launched against him and failed because of his power and money.


What is Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich about?

This documentary miniseries closely follows the investigations of the financier Jeffrey Epstein. Last year, news broke that this celebrity in the world of finance had "killed himself" in New York City in a detention center while awaiting a judge's sentence after a day in court. The sentence he would face would be up to 45 years in prison for child abuse and sex trafficking of women. This is, however, just the end of the Netflix documentary miniseries, which starts from the first investigation that was carried out against him in the state of Florida.

In the first chapters we see on camera his first victims (or the first to denounce him, rather) tell how nobody believed them or how their complaints were dismissed in New York State and then by the FBI. We also see journalists and police from Palm Beach recounting the frustration they felt every time they gathered testimonies of victims of abuse in the home of this millionaire and later learned that their superiors were bought, manipulated or threatened and that the case they had put together was going to be silenced.

Later, the documentary becomes murkier when we are told about the atrocities he committed on his Caribbean island, from which he did not let the women he had sexually enslaved leave. All this is told to us in parallel of the legal tricks with which this man managed to always escape from his accusations.

The documentary has archive images, testimonies of the survivors, interviews with their workers, journalists, and people close to their circle.

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A flaw

Although it is a documentary that fiercely defends the version of the victims and that denounces the acts of a group of powerful men, Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich does not feel like a feminist documentary. Although the documentary does make it very clear that behind it there is a whole network to which many men from the spheres of power belong, this series does not make an effort to denounce or show that Epstein's crimes are part of the patriarchal system. It seems more scandalized by the obscenity of his power and money, which made the law not apply to him, than by the violence of his acts.

It is a rigorous and urgent investigation, because this, although it is not new, is very current. However, it does not seem to be much more than that: it does not ask about the justice that we should consider in cases of sexual abuse, nor does it question the fact that Epstein's greatest accomplice was a woman who is alive and free today , nor does it show how Epstein's heinous acts can manifest themselves in other ways in the daily violence of men towards women. Perhaps this is asking for another documentary, with a different format and another story, but one who has studied the Epstein case so carefully would expect a short reflection on justice and the correct reparation of victims.