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How To Be A Serial Killer (2009)

Matthew Gray Gubler , Laura Regan , Luke Ricci  |  R |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

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How To Be A Serial Killer + The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (The Criterion Collection)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Matthew Gray Gubler, Laura Regan, George Wyner, Gonzalo Menendez, Dameon Clarke
  • Directors: Luke Ricci
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Surround Sound, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002I0DJKI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,707 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

HOW TO BE A SERIAL KILLER pokes fun at the self-help literature industry and motivational speakers in general. There are so many ways to get off track while pursuing the perfect life, and an even greater number of pop-psychologists and gurus out there to lead the masses astray. Mike Wilson has found the perfect method of
getting your life back on track and achieving a meaningful existence. Mike teaches his method in an exciting seminar series: How To Be A Serial Killer. Mike tells all of his students: You have what it takes, you just have to pull the trigger on the life you deserve. Students rave about Mike's depth of knowledge on the subject of serial killing and his endless enthusiasm and zest for life. One student described Mike as a tasty smoothie made from a little bit of Charles Manson, some Tony Robbins, and a sprinkle of the messianic charisma of Jesus. Mike administers his first one-on-one tutorial when he recruits a lost soul named Bart to be his pupil in the art of serial killing. Mike's 10-lesson program includes weaponry, corpse disposal, keeping things from loved ones, and many other pearls. As Mike begins to teach Bart more and more about the ways of successful serial killing, it becomes more and more difficult to hide the truth from his girlfriend Abigail (Laura Regan. And when she does inevitably find out, Mike's life as serial killer gets thrown for a serious loop. Now, devastated by the loss of the love of his life, and with the cops on his tail for the first time in his life, Mike and Bart retreat to Mike's desert hideout to make preparations for their escape to Mexico. But when a local sheriff's department interrupts their
preparations, all hell breaks loose, and Mike must learn a lesson of his own: how to deal with police standoffs and full-scale gunfights.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique mockumentary with some dark humor October 9, 2009
Inevitably this is being called a copycat to Man Bites Dog - Criterion Collection but I feel this has some of its own flavor, to use a bad word, in creating a domestic take on the "genre". I would recommend giving this one a fair shot, and even though they pick the depraved-to-be as another video store clerk stereotype, I still enjoyed the premise and performances.

The film mixes a "documentary" (talking to the camera/stage audience like a self help guru) - and fictional (camera does not exist) look into this guys homicidal life as he recruits a protege to pass on his serial killer skills. The story splices this interview-the-people-in-the-main-guys-life with the murdering events as they occur. Sometimes it feels long, but in the end you get used to what they are doing with the film and it keeps a decent pace, especially knowing what the outcome has to be.

The sound is good and the picture has a high budget feel. The supplements are 20 minutes of deleted scenes divided into the same amount of headings, but they thankfully have a play all option. I had to actually give this 3.5 star film an extra half just on the management of these scenes. They are mostly all interviews, and would have paced the film more being towards a farce than a mockumentary so it was nice to see them spliced out. There were one or two that would have been better left in with certain kills, but for being a relatively new crew, they did a nice job. Hope you enjoy.

The film is DEFINITELY not for everyone, as neither the slasher crowd or comedy-only crowd will be completely satisfied. It is more of a unique take on the idea of showing a self-help film like no other. I almost feel like putting it in the self-help section to see who freaks out on me.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wickedly funny! February 6, 2010
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This film had me shreiking with laughter! It's filled with dark humor and sarcasm. It's so gratifying to see someone clobber total jerks (we've all imagined doing it ourselves.) And the "infomercial" format is hilarious! Matthew Gray Gubler is great as the apprentice. Loved this film!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny December 17, 2009
By Gina
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
After watching this I knew a lot of people might not enjoy it like I did. Funny, strange, and interesting at the same time. I love true crime books, tv shows, and movies and when I saw this was coming out on DVD I had to have it. The idea behind this movie is very funny, a man teaching another man to be a serial killer. I would not recommend this to be a family night movie, but I though it was worth getting.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie for those with a dark sense of humor! January 7, 2010
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I really enjoyed this movie. It was strange and increadibly funny. The movie is utilizes dark and off the cuff humor. It is not straight up comedy like Saturday Night Live or a Will Ferrel movie. It is much darker and may be lost on some.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the funniest movie I have ever seen May 28, 2010
By Mykola
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I found out about this movie from someone who had set up a site for it on MySpace. It has one of my favorite actors in it, Matthew Gray Gubler, who plays Spencer on Criminal Minds. I thought it sounded different so I bought a copy. I had no idea this movie I had never even heard of would turn out to be one of my favorites. I have watched it too many times to count now, and I never get tired of it.

This is a very dark comedy, and I even have a hard time calling it "dark", as it makes me laugh so hard. Dameon Clarke, an actor from Canada (I had never heard of him either) is Mike Wilson who takes Matt's character, Bart, under his wing and teaches him how to be a serial killer. Bart is an unhappy clerk in a video store who has always wanted to kill someone and Mike shows him the ropes. I was very impressed with Clarke, so I checked out his other work on IMDb. Most of it is guest starring roles on TV, including a small part as a victim on an episode of Criminal Minds. Maybe that is where he and Gubler met; or maybe he got the role on CM because of the movie. Either way, they make a great pair in this movie. I would love to see both of them in movies in the future. Gubler went to school to be a director and ended up doing CM, so I don't know how far he wants to go as an actor. I sure do love his work though, and I would love to see these two work together again.

This was most likely a low budget film, so I was very impressed by not only the actors but the directing and the cinematography. It almost has the tone of a documentary.

This movie is so funny, but it also has some fairly poignant scenes if you are the type who analyzes things like I do and are able to notice them.

I would recommend this movie to anyone who has a sense of humor - a REAL sense of humor.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lighter Side of Serial Killing January 26, 2010
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This film was certainly dark, but it was quite humorous. The plot was a violent plot (a seasoned serial killer taking a protege; how could it not be violent?), but the graphic violence was not shown on film. It was not a deep psychological profile of serial killers. It was not actually an instructional film on how to become a serial killer (thank goodness). It was about as fun an approach to the topic of serial killers as one could take.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious! April 17, 2013
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This movie is absolutely hilarious! On par with Office Space! A must see if you like kooky off the wall humor!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very entertaining April 1, 2013
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This was a very entertaining movie. I had heard of it but had not seen it before I purchased it. It is entertaining despite what you might think a movie with this title would be - not super gory. Filled with funny scenes, one-liners, and a very interesting plotline, this one was a winner with me!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars OFF-THE-WALL MOVIE
Published 1 month ago by mystery
5.0 out of 5 stars I recommend this highly
A great combination of psychosis and humor. I definitely recommend this movie to those with a slightly twisted sense of humor.
Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Odd sense of humor love it!!!!!
I have an odd sense of humor so I love this movie- its not for everyone but its hilarious if you are a little twisted like I am
Published 11 months ago by Abby Joan
3.0 out of 5 stars Humor and horror sometimes just go hand in hand
How To Be A Serial Killer was both written and directed by Luke Ricci which was the second movie he has written and first to direct. Read more
Published on April 3, 2011 by Stuart Conover
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this movie
It was different than anything I've seen before and it was a refreshing new outlook at things. I watch a lot of crime shows and this was the other side of the story! Read more
Published on March 18, 2011 by Christy Jane
3.0 out of 5 stars Not for everyone.
I've always enjoyed dark comedies, so I was looking forward to seeing this movie. It wasn't great, but it wasn't awful... It was just ok. Read more
Published on October 18, 2010 by Hurricane-D
5.0 out of 5 stars How to be a Serial Killer
Fun, Fun, Fun! Black comedy tongue-in-cheek instructions of how to be a serial killer given by a most likeable guy!
Published on September 17, 2010 by Pat
4.0 out of 5 stars LESSON LEARNED
*Dameon Clarke's dynamic performance as the motivational killer
*CRIMINAL MIND's Matthew Gray Gubler's continued mastery of the loveable nerd
*Smart blend of... Read more
Published on July 22, 2010 by Michael Butts
5.0 out of 5 stars how to be a serial killer
This is a great parody, strange but entertaining. The fact the Matthew Gray Gubler plays the apprentice to learn how to be a serial killer is hilarious, since his role on criminal... Read more
Published on April 7, 2010 by lesa
4.0 out of 5 stars part mocumenty, part motivational seminar, part instructional video
interesting very dark comedy that makes you laugh at society, consumerism and the media.... the film is dry humor for the most part, plus it has a good cast...
Published on February 15, 2010 by Eric Blair
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