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Bazaar Bizarre (2004)

James Ellroy , Benjamin Meade  |  NR |  DVD
2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: James Ellroy
  • Directors: Benjamin Meade
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, HiFi Sound, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Troma Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 8, 2011
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #377,443 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

When Chris Bryson was discovered limping down a street in 1988 wearing only a dog collar, the horrifying acts of one Kansas City resident were exposed. Bob Berdella, a local fascinated by the occult, had been spending his off hours torturing, sodomizing and murdering young men. Follow true crime author James Ellroy ('L.A. Confidential', 'The Black Dahlia') as he traces the history of Bob Berdella's sordid crimes with interviews of Bryson, gruesome reenactments, and disturbing musical numbers. Revisit the horror and try to come out alive.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Both Campy and Gory, but interesting. December 13, 2006
By Duane
I think only those aware of the Berdella story will like this. It's part documentary, part campy reenactment. Berdella is interviewed, as are the detectives who worked the case and Chris Bryson--the young man who escaped and brought an end to Berdella's murderous reign.

And, to those who, like me, have a morbid fascination in wanting to see the Berdella photos (other than those displayed in the book written years ago), throughout the film, during the reenactment scenes of Berdella taking pictures of his drugged victims, shots of the actual victims are quickly flashed on the screen.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Documentary with reinactments! December 22, 2006
I think your ordinary "scary" movie watcher might not like this. But as a serial killer buff i must say this was good! If you want to know about Bob Berdella and not just watch reinactments (like Bundy, Gacy and Dahmer) this is a good one! You get to see the blood in the reinactments but you also get to hear from an actual victim, see the place and the town and more about the one and only Bob Berdella who was one sick bastard ;)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Two stars deducted for the campy musical interludes September 29, 2007
Were those really necessary? And the band wasn't even that good.

That said, I had barely heard of Bob Berdella until I found the book "Rites of Burial" a while back. It's one of better true crime books I've seen, and it never fails to amaze me how some of these people can do what they do under many people's noses, and nobody seems to suspect a thing.

Incidentally, there is little evidence that Berdella cannibalized his victims or served them at potlucks.

A Web search after reading that book revealed that Christopher Bryson, the escaped victim filmed here in silhouette, changed his name and moved to another part of the state. I don't know if his marriage survived this ordeal and its chaotic aftermath, but if you get this DVD, be sure to watch the filmmakers' comments. One of them said that Bryson had never told his children about the kidnapping and torture (he had one at the time, a son) and hadn't intended to, and when he was approached about making this film, he knew he would have to and when he did, "he felt like a tumor had been cut out of him."

The interviews with the key players in this story, and the narration by James Ellroy, are chilling. This film is unrated, but if it had a rating, the re-enactments with the carrot and cucumber would in themselves merit an NC-17.

One need not fear Berdella any more because he died in 1992.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing despite itself October 30, 2012
Bazaar Bizarre is a strange little film. A mixed beast, partially a brutal documentary about a very heinous serial killer, Bob Berdella, and partially a campy festival of BADLY acted reenactments and worse music (it's from Troma, what do you expect?) the movie manages to be seriously disturbing despite its' infinite cheese. The segments of actual interview footage with the police, court reporters, and Berdella himself present a case riddled with problems--not least homophobia and a nonchalant attitude toward the disappearences of male prostitutes--and Berdella himself one of the most cold, unsympathetic characters one could interact with. Against this chilly backdrop, we get occasionally laugh-out-loud reenactments with B-movie acting, copious nudity, poor special effects and the omnipresent Terrible Music. It shouldn't work, but somehow it does. At the end, you'll ask yourself what the hell you just watched, but it's still worth watching. There's a lot of food for thought in there, buried in the dreck.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
It's sure a strange case of Bob Berdella. This both documentary and almost film alike version here is very interesting for what you otherwise find on serial killers, this guy is sick, and I have watched it 3-4 times within a month.

I found it very thrilling and obscure, abit comic here and there, but a new innovative way to make documentaries, and I think the result and my 5 stars talks for it self.

Worth buying! But only if you are abit sickening yourself, or into pathology studies of primate instincts & psyche, thus criminal psychology, I mean, this DVD is offending many with a fence of morality build around them I would assume?, but a psychological kick to study upon.

Bob Berdella was both smart and dumb person in same objective form, that is seen on his crimes, and the sloppiness, and so on, he was a big large homosexual serial killer who took whoever which entered his home with him, he was a sadist, very regardless of his victims emotions. His torture, was repulsive in my view. Through the film, described both verbally/visually and with drawings + his diaries, one surviving victim tellings + footage with Bob himself,

This is indeed a true documentary.

And I hail those who made it!
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