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To Catch a Killer (1992)

Brian Dennehy , Michael Riley , Eric Till  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Brian Dennehy, Michael Riley, Margot Kidder, Meg Foster, Martin Julien
  • Directors: Eric Till
  • Writers: Jud Kinberg
  • Producers: David McAree, Jinny Schreckinger, Jud Kinberg, Lance H. Robbins, Patrick Whitley
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Image Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: September 21, 1999
  • Run Time: 360 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00000JWWP
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #303,859 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "To Catch a Killer" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Item number 12052-45, Grading is cover/record: VG+ using Goldmine standards. 196? Please see seller profile for abbreviation descriptions.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brian Denehy at his-evil-best September 8, 2002
I first saw this movie years ago and still pick it every now and then because first it's a true crime story, and then Brian Denehy's acting is so extraordinary accurate. If you want to start a collection on thrillers or if you're interested in true crime, and more specifically about the cat and mouse game that Gacy played to the very end, buy this movie, you won't regret it.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Choice For Dennehy To Play Gacy July 26, 2005
I taped this off the tv i long time ago now, & i was astounded by Brian Dennehy's sheer power in this role, he is just so brilliant for the role, if you would put a photo of the real John Wayne Gacy alongside with one of Brian Dennehy, you would swear they are almost twins! Kudos goes to actor Michael Riley who played the detective detrmined to bring Gacy to justice for the brutal crimes Gacy commited, as a result of his relentless pursuit of Gacy, his home life suffers beacuse of this. One of the best acting roles of a real life Serial Killer i have ever seen.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent acting January 5, 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is one of my alltime favourite movies. Brian Dennehy is really scary as Gacy. If you want to watch a great movie, watch this one, but not alone. You really get the feeling that Mr Gacy must have been one sick man, but quite clever, until he got caught, that is. Thank God for Kozenzyk and his team and that they were so persistent catching him, otherwise, who knows how many more men he would have killed unnoticed.....
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best movies of the 1990's March 22, 2006
Let me start by saying that i am not normally a fan of TV movies, i have often found them formulaic, bland compromised and badly acted. This film is superbly put together, while watching you cannot help but feel the pain of the victims and their famillies, the director took great pains to show the human side of the horrors which Gacy inflicted on Chicago. The face of this sadness is the detective who is hunting Gacy for the abduction and murder of teenagers, we see him deteriorating mentally throughout the film, often crying tears, he suffers physically and emotionally simply by being in proximity to the horror of the investigation. On the other hand we have Gacy played brilliantly by Dennehy, whoever cast him in this role deserves a lot of credit, he even looks like Gacy. Dennehy injects a massive amount of unpleasantness into his portrayal of the sadistic killer, when he leers and shows his teeth biting his lower lip as he taunts the cops you get the measure that this is a fully fleshed three dimensional monster you are watching. The film is extraordinarily sensitive to the subject matter and despite (or because of) being low on gore the overall effect is completely unsettling and incredibly disturbing, we do not see the horror but it is suggested brilliantly, from the droning noise of the furnace in Gacy's house to the puddles of filth accumulating on the surface of the soil in the crawlspace under his house where the bodies are buried, we take a peek into hell. The pacing and tension throughout the film is maintained well despite the long running time of over three hours. Read more ›
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
An absolutely fantastic movie portraying the life of John Gacy, a simple man who runs a building contractor company. In his spare time, he loves entertaining sick children in hospital, dressing up as Pongo the clown. But what John does in his spare time is both inconcievable and terrifying. This film is based on a true story - that of John Gacy, and how in his spare time he sexually assaulted, tortured, and murdered thirty-three young men, making him America's single-most brutal serial killer of all time. "To Catch a Killer" begins as yet another young man goes missing, Gacy having lured him into his house and taken it from there. When his mother notices him gone, she calls the police. And in steps Michael Riley, who plays Lieutenant Packer, a man struggling to balance his job with his family, much to his son's dislike. Packer spends every waking moment pursuing Gacy, uncovering vital and astonishing clues along the way, revealling more and more about Gacy's twisted actions, bringing the movie to a terrifying ending where at last the boy's body is found. An excellent movie, with Dennehy's best performance ever, and a one even as good by Riley. It revealls the horrifying truth about "stranger-danger", and portrays that, like a breakdown on a lost and lonely highway late at night, it could happen to you. One memorable and terrifying scene has Gacy doing his performance as a clown at the children's hospital. Riley and his men track him down and watch him as he entertains away, showing off tricks and telling jokes. Then as Gacy notices Riley is watching, he performs a cunning trick in which he borrows Riley's handcuffs and demonstrates on a young boy a trick, to see if the boy can get himself out of the handcuffs without the key. Riley watches intently, and Dennehy's role is highlighted with the terror and fear he gives us.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars To Catch A Killer June 19, 2007
Format:VHS Tape
I saw this film when it first came out on television. The film listed on this website is not the complete film. It has been cut from it's original version and format. To Catch A killer was just recienly on the Lifetime channel, and it is spli into to parts. This film is at least almost 4 hours long, and not 95 minutes. Anyone wanted to get this great film starring Brian Dennehey should try to search for the original un-cut version. To Catch A Killer is an intense, and horrifying depiction of the infamous killer (John Wayne Gasey), and the hard working dedicated detectives who built a case and to put this man away in prision where he needed to be.

I have the 95 minute VHS tape, but you are missing some of it's most griping moments in the 4 hour version, that any film collecter should want to own.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The Price is a Crime
I don't know about you, but I surely wouldn't spend around 150 bucks for a DVD. Sure, the VHS version of "To Catch a Killer" (TCAK) is much cheaper, but who has a VHS player... Read more
Published 2 months ago by California Dreaming
1.0 out of 5 stars About a true story but really boring
This is a classic early 90s tv movie, so do not expect anything fancy,
both in terms of acting and cinematography. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Suntsu
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better true-crime teleplays of its time
Out of a spate of 'ripped-from-the-headlines' crime stories to be produced for television in the late Eighties/early Nineties, To Catch a Killer definitely stands out as one of... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Muriel Elaine Wood
5.0 out of 5 stars A haunting true story,
Excellent made for TV movie. I was lucky enough to find a seller years ago who burned a copy of the 3 hour cut for sale. Read more
Published 10 months ago by pattk77
5.0 out of 5 stars great acting
I saw this years ago and hadn't found it anywhere un til I went to Amazon.I purchased it just so my friend could see how Brian Dennehy played this roll . Read more
Published 12 months ago by susan d sarvis
5.0 out of 5 stars a Thrilling movie almost in our back yard
This is such a thrilling story & well done. Brian Denehey is such a brilliant actor & made this movie so life-like,. he played John Gacy better than he really was in life! Read more
Published 13 months ago by bj
5.0 out of 5 stars Region 1 DVD to catch a killer
Many thanks for this rare and excellent film. Brian Dennehy is great as the serial killer, and really creepy too! reminded me of Hanibal Lecter a bit. Read more
Published 16 months ago by T. CROWE
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazon Sellers must be joking
This is a great movie its just a shame the Amazon Sellers have to charge over 100 dollars one is just in acceptable condition which means there is a possibility it might skip or... Read more
Published on August 19, 2012 by Richard Karns
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific TV Mini-Series From the 80s.
Brian Dennehy plays John Wayne Gacy, the serial killer of over 25 young men and boys. The movie in a low key manner examines how the case unfolded with Gacy being connected to a... Read more
Published on July 20, 2011 by Lynn Ellingwood
5.0 out of 5 stars great movie
This is a well scripted movie and Brian really slipped into the roll almost as if he was a killer in real life . Read more
Published on December 25, 2009 by deer hunter
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