An utterly bizarre and crazy story
There are some stories that are stranger than fiction. There are unanswered mysteries like The Staircase and wild rides like Tiger King. But perhaps none are quite so bizarre and crazy as Running with the Devil: The Wild World of John McAfee. The tale of this antivirus mogul is utterly bizarre – and gripping from start to finish.
With an exhaustive history including working for NASA, creating McAfee Antivirus along with dabbles in cryptocurrency, smartphone apps and yoga, McAfee’s crazy life culminates in one dramatic incident where he’s suspected of killing Gregor Faull, his neighbour in Belize.
It’s here where the documentary really picks up and through a series of handheld camera footage, talking head interviews and news reports from the US, this 100 minute documentary pieces together John’s journey through Belize and beyond, eventually leading to his “suicide” in a Spanish prison just before his extradition to the US.
This in itself is suspicious for a number of reasons (which I won’t get into here, I’ll let you guys watch the doc!) but the final interview of the film is certainly telling and could change everything we knew about the man.
Directed by documentarian Charlie Russell, Running with the Devil is an intriguing and fascinating watch, featuring never-before-seen footage of McAfee while he’s on the run. The film aims to answer one question – who is John McAfee? And in a way, Netflix’s docu-film never quite achieves that; the man is one heck of a charismatic enigma.
What’s immediately evident is that McAfee is a flamboyant egomaniac and certainly no stranger to the camera. He comments several times here how comfortable he is with cameras all around, and there’s one particularly surreal and unintentionally hilarious moment where John starts playing a flute just before being detained by authorities. These sort of crazy and unhinged moments will ultimately keep you watching – and guessing – as to what John is likely to do next.
The best documentaries are usually those that either include a crazy story, a crazy scenario or a crazy mystery. Running with the Devil includes all three. This is another absolutely mental documentary and another sure-fire winner from Netflix. A must watch.
Verdict - 8.5/10