“Before I was born, I definitely had the wrong identity. I already didn’t know — I was already prepared not to know who I really was.”

Frédéric Bourdin

Bart Layton’s arresting documentary features a story almost as bewildering as Abducted in Plain Sight, with an American family who welcomed in a 23-year-old French man impersonating their missing teenage child. What makes The Imposter so fascinating is the involvement of Frédéric Bourdin, who candidly explains both his actions and his thought process, something that typically requires a great deal of conjecture in similar true crime stories. However, the statements of a serial liar perhaps ought to be challenged more directly than Layton chooses to. Instead, the story is told largely from Bourdin’s perspective. The Imposter sets up an obvious mystery as to how Bourdin’s deception will ultimately be exposed, but it also manages to take a surprising turn in the last act, albeit with the nebulous ending that is now de rigeur for true crime.