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Customer Review

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Let me spell it out for you, February 11, 2009
This review is from: Alphabet Killer (DVD)
I'll admit, I have a morbid fascination with serial killer movies. They harness a raw energy that is almost overwhelming. There is often a strange connection with the victims, the detectives, and sometimes even the killers themselves(or is it just me?). Plus there is a stark fear generated by recognizing a pattern and watching people struggle to prevent further mayhem.

THE ALPHABET KILLER is a pretty well-crafted, fictional tale. It's derived from some unsolved murders that took place in Rochester, NY, during the early 70's. A few young girls with matching initials would turn up dead in nearby towns that were spelled with the same first letter (i.e. Carla Castille in Churchville, Wendy Walsh in Webster).

A female detective(Eliza Dushku) is on the case, and she quickly becomes obsessed with cracking it. Actually, she's the one that starts to crack. She gets completely consumed, the mystery eats at her mind as she starts talking to herself and hallucinating (same thing happens to me when I watch reality TV shows).

Anyway, the movie takes a pretty dramatic shift early on when this woman loses control and attempts suicide. She is diagnosed with scizophrenia and admitted to a mental hospital.

Several times throughout this movie, we're shown the visions that this crazy woman sees--ghastly dead children that constantly haunt her. This is done for shocking effect, but I thought it was completely overdone. Kinda seemed like a ripoff of a Japanese ghost story film.

The story then proceeds as the police are completely baffled by the subsequent Alphabet murders. The mentally unfit cop is put back on the case, possibly due to her past romantic relationship with the chief. And of course, crazy is not something you can just sell on amazon.com.

Director Rob Schmidt does a decent job at mounting suspense. This film attempts to be dark, but doesn't completely succeed. It is interesting as a psychological descent into madness. I thought the cast did a very solid job. This has no gore or reenactment of the murders themselves, so some might get bored. Worth a rental.
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Showing 1-10 of 20 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 11, 2009 7:46:17 PM PST
Dave. K says:
Yo C. I heard mixed things on this so I skipped it. Rob Schmidt did ok with Wrong Turn I suppose nothing I wanna see again anytime soon, but I did quite like his Masters of Horror: Right to Die. So he's 1 for 2.

Eliza Dushku is total hotness

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2009 3:32:07 AM PST
Yeah it was decent but nothing special. You do catch a glimpse of Eliza with her shirt off, which makes this must sees hit.
Later bud...

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 7:06:17 AM PST
Woopak says:
what the heck...this sounds almost very similar to the flick I reviewed last night! schizophrenia--delusions and hallucinations--killings.
wow! this is so weird.
great write up, dude. I too like Serial killer movies...
what's your fave?

Posted on Feb 12, 2009 1:41:36 PM PST
Hey CB, I love serial killer flicks, although some really suck like the Dahmer and Gacy ones. One of my favorites is Henry: Portrait of a Serial killer. Maniac is probably my favorite though. TCM and Psycho loosley inspired by Ed Gein, two classics there.

I may check this one out, great review-MP

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2009 1:53:08 PM PST
TOP TEN--(in this order)

1. Seven
2. Fargo
3. Psycho
4. Texas Chainsaw Massacre
5. Henry
6. Deep Red
7. New York Ripper
8. Silence of the Lambs
9. M
10. Honeymoon Killers

Those aren't all based on real serial killers of course. Also loved Bully, Copycat, From Hell, Zodiac....I know I'm forgetting something. But yeah, they're ahhhhsome.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2009 1:54:11 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 12, 2009 1:54:47 PM PST
MANIAC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I knew I was forgetting one! Thanks MP!!!
That's probably my #5.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2009 5:20:50 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 12, 2009 5:21:51 PM PST
Paul Ess. says:
And you're forgetting that almost Christmassy family flick - 'Schramm'.
And whats this...SOTL and NYR = in. 'Man Bites Dog' = nowhere to be seen !!?
AND no mention of Dushku buffness. (!!) ..................................................................................(Soooo Sorry!)
SERIOUSLY shoddy work Christopher. C minus.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 12, 2009 8:32:29 PM PST
Holy! How could I forget Man Bites Dog?! Schramm is great too. I also love Natural Born Killers. What else? There are so many great ones, killing people is soooo much fun!

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 13, 2009 12:15:03 AM PST
Yeah you can't forget Maniac!

Posted on Feb 13, 2009 4:38:59 AM PST
fmwaalex says:
Love serial killers, er um I mean serial killer movies and Eliza Dushku as well. This sounds like it could have been great man, to bad I guess. Great review.
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