What drives two twelve-year-old girls to stab a mutual friend nineteen times and leave her for dead? What could possibly fill young and innocent minds with such cold blood and carnage?
HBO’s new documentary Beware the Slenderman (debuting January 23, 2017) explores the very real case of a near-fatal stabbing attack in the small town of Waukesha, Wisconsin. Reportedly, two twelve-year-old girls lured their friend into the woods and stabbed her nineteen times. The two claim that they had been forced to commit this act of extreme violence by a fictional internet monster called Slenderman—a tall, thin, pale, man-like creature with no face that is typically portrayed stalking, abducting, and torturing people, particularly children. They reportedly believe that this monster was going to harm them and their families if they did not do its dark bidding—that only by murdering someone could they be free from his wrath.
Directed by Irene Taylor Brodsky, Beware the Slenderman features “heart-wrenching access to the girls’ families,” and “plunges deep down the rabbit hole of their actions, exploring how the dark corners of the Internet can influence society’s most impressionable young consumers of the media.”
Watch the chilling trailer below: