Review: ‘Unbelievable’ is exactly right


Rape happens, sometimes not to be solved.

What’s unbelievable is when detectives automatically don’t believe the accusers based on personal opinions.

The Netflix mini series “Unbelievable” is based on a true story about an 18-year old foster care teen who reported her rape but retracted the statement when the police started to pressure her about lying and other rape cases involved later in the years proved she didn’t lie.

Marie Adler, the accuser who is simply “Marie” in the story, was mistreated by detectives when she stumbled over facts about her rape leading them to believe she was “crying wolf” and demanding she retract her statement. 

According to RAINN, Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, “only 230 out of every 1,000 sexual assaults are reported to police.” 

We find out later on that one of her foster mothers called the police department to say Marie has a history of attention seeking and was suspicious of her. 

The investigation began before Marie was even able to process what happened to her and nobody cared about her mental state.

RAINN also states that “67% of survivors who were victimized by a stranger experience professional or emotional issues, including moderate to severe distress, or increased problems at work or school.”

This seemed to apply to Marie. 

While Marie’s case is happening in 2008 in Washington, there’s another rape investigation happening in 2011 in Colorado with Detective Karen Duvall.

Duvall handles the rape case victim with care and listens to the her without interruptions, completely different then what Marie dealt with.

This case lead suspicions that the perpetrator has raped before which brings more cases and connections with other police departments trying to hunt down the serial rapist.

If Marie’s detectives followed through without any outside judgement and victim shaming then the rapist may have been caught earlier. 

False rape allegations are so rare that it’s in the single digits according to a 2014 article, “Unfounding Sexual Assault: Examining the Decision to Unfound and Identifying False Reports” which states that the statistics of it being false is 4.5 percent.

Facts are that some police departments need more training in dealing with rape investigations with tact and the ability to figure out what was a lie and the truth no matter their opinion.

It seemed that everyone thought Marie was lying because she was detached when telling people, but honestly did they not think that was her protecting her state of mind?