Hot Docs 2015: Deep Web

DeepWeb Crimes in the darkest corners of the internet are explored in Deep Web.  The deep web is a term used for all unindexed data online.  The deep web has become a hub for underground black markets, which sell everything from drugs to forged documents.  The biggest of these markets is The Silk Road, the alleged leader of which, 29 year old Ross Ulbricht, is arrested by the FBI and waiting trial. Alex Winter (Downloaded) returns with another tech-related documentary with Deep Web, narrated by Winter’s old Bill and Ted castmate Keanu Reeves.  Despite the title, Deep Web is not entirely about the darkest corners of the internet, where a lot of nefarious action apparently takes place.  The film primarily focuses on the story of Ross Ulbricht, who was arrested under the charge of running the “darknet” marketplace The Silk Road, which was notorious for its listings of illegal drugs.  However, The Silk Road itself takes a back seat, as questions are asked how exactly the FBI got access to the website’s servers, which eventually lead to the arrest. Deep Web continues the narrative found in similarly-themed documentaries, such as last year’s The Internet’s Own Boy, in how those charged with cybercrimes tend to not have the same rights as those charged with “normal” crimes.  Allegedly, the investigation of The Silk Road involved seizing computers without a warrant and allegedly hacking into the site’s servers.  In addition, Ulbricht had an “uncharged” crime of murder-for-hire on the record, which cast a shadow on his entire trial.  However, there is also a movement underway by “cypherpunks” to free the internet from government control. Altogether, Deep Web is an interesting look at the world in the charted areas of the web. ★ ★ ★ ★ | LIKED IT Screenings:

  • Mon, Apr 27, 1:30 PM – TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
  • Thu, Apr 30, 9:00 PM – Kingsway Theatre

Sean Kelly Author

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described über-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).