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The Thrilling Heist Docuseries You Need To Binge On Netflix

When the phrase "art heist" comes up, images from The Thomas Crown Affair and Ocean's 11 franchise may spring to mind. You might think of suave playboys who have to assemble a crack team of professionals to carry out an intricate, complex plot to ensure they can ride off into the sunset with a precious Van Gogh. Then again, you may just need a couple of police officer uniforms and some gullible guards. That was the case with the 1990 Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum art heist, which resulted in 13 one-of-a-kind works of art being stolen with modern estimates putting their value at over $500 million (via Business Insider).

Thirty years later, the crime has still not been solved nor has the stolen art been recovered. There have been theories and leads, but ultimately, nothing has panned out. Suspects have passed away in the time since the heist, and detectives have retired. By all accounts, it seems like this is one case that is dead-set on remaining a mystery, and that just makes the new Netflix docuseries, This Is a Robbery: The World's Greatest Art Heist, all the more intriguing as it presents all the pieces of the puzzle that refuse to go together. The limited series is one of the latest offerings from Netflix for April, and it's already cracked into the streaming platform's Top 10 TV shows. With only four episodes, this is a docuseries that you'll want to finish as soon as possible to learn everything about this story that you can. 

This Is a Robbery handles its real-life subject matter with appropriate dramatic flair

The first episode of This Is a Robbery takes you through the heist itself, walking you through exactly how the two men managed to work their way into the building, giving them 81 minutes all to themselves to take as much art as possible — including the immensely popular painting "Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee" by Rembrandt van Rijn. The second episode explores the initial theories of the case while the rest of the series follows the police work that went into deciphering to identities behind the thieves. By the end of This Is a Robbery: The World's Greatest Art Heist, you may feel just as frustrated as the authority figures at the center of this case. You just want to know the answers to who stole the art and where it is now. Most disturbing of all, there's a very real possibility the artwork was destroyed due to an inability to move it thanks to all of the attention the case received. As it stands, this case will continue to linger in the minds of art historians for a long time to come. 

The true crime aspect draws you in, but what stays in your mind is the importance and reverence true-blue art deserves. During a time when a non-fungible token (NFT) of the overly-attached girlfriend meme sells for over $400,000 (via Decrypt), it's vital to care for artwork from the old masters, and the docuseries spares no detail in showing how devastating this crime was for the museum and the art community at large. Netflix has been on a bit of a sophisticated art crime kick lately, with both this series and the highly popular Lupin series starring Omar Sy doing incredibly well on the streaming platform, so give your brain a workout with this in-depth documentary that will stay in your mind for a while.