Documentary Review: The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann (Netflix)

The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann is a true-crime documentary that was released on Netfix in March 2019, which takes a detailed look at the disappearance of three-year-old Madeleine McCann, who vanished from the seaside resort of Praia de Luz in Portugal while on holiday with her family in 2007.


Although Madeleine went missing over 12 years ago now, her case is still one of the UK’s biggest mysteries, with new suspects still being questioned even today. It’s such a huge case that we all seemed to make our minds up about a long time ago, so I think it’s a very relevant series to remind us of the life of a young girl who may or may not still be out there.

It is an incredibly insightful documentary seen from many different perspectives, showing interviews with many of the people involved, including the former head of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Command, the British businessman who supported the McCanns financially, the McCanns’ former spokesperson, and the former head of the PJ investigation, as well as many other journalists and investigators.

However, there is also a lot of irrelevant information given, with nearly a whole episode about the town in which Madeleine went missing in. The series could definitely have been a lot more concise, but I also think that it will open the publics’ eyes to the truths behind it. It doesn’t particularly give any new information, but it does inform us about a past which we maybe weren’t so educated in when we initially made our assumptions.

It’s a shame that neither Kate nor Gerry McCann nor any of their friends or investigating associates wanted to take part in the series, but I understand that they’re all probably tired of the blame being put on them by now, so I think it made sense for them to not get involved.

However, whilst I remember thinking that the parents were involved in the disappearance at the time of the crime, the documentary has definitely made me see things differently. I think it was important for the documentary to be made as it could lead to new information being brought forward. The series allows for many different theories to be questioned, leaving many possibilities still open. It doesn’t have its own point of view, so it leaves everything up to your own judgement, just as it should.

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