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Bazaar Bizarre

2.2 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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(Mar 08, 2011)
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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.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: James Ellroy
  • Directors: Benjamin Meade
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, HiFi Sound, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Troma Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 8, 2011
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003UBHQUS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #167,507 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
There's a normal documentary in here somewhere, but there's so much weird padding and prurience mucking up the ediing, I just gave up about a quarter in. And, there's some unnecessary frontal nudity of an injured, terrified young man that's pretty darn disrespectful to the victims and their survivors. And, why the band (who, no doubt, are someone's brother-in-law's buddies or something) keep showing up is beyond me...
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What is the deal with the scenes of the band playing? The music is kinda crappy, and the scenes do not mesh with the rest of the film at all. In my opinion, they could have left those scenes out, and the movie would have made more sense. Maybe someone in the band was friends with the director. That's the only way I can think of that would posses the director to put in this nonsense.

The case is interesting, but more time could have been spent showing the actual interview with Bob Bordella, instead of this poorly composed piece of crap.
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Format: DVD
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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To be fair, I only made it through about 20 minutes of this before turning it off. A fan of true crime and documentaries, this was not what was expected. This is more for those aficionados of the gruesome fictional genre, rather than those of documentaries.
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I found this to be an entertaining and interesting documentary, as I had never heard of Berdella before. The guy was a pure and simple nut. As far as the quality of the production goes, it lacks a lot, and that is, frankly, to be expected from a Troma release. There were some okay re-enactments and such, so I don't fault them for that, but the "musical" interludes with the band playing were absolutely superfluous and I fast-forwarded through them. The musical parts went on for FAR too long each time, and they added nothing to the documentary, other than length. A shorter, tighter running length would have made this a much better film.

Even with these problems, I liked the film and would recommend it.
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Extremely graphic and gross! They could have done re-enactments and discussed these crimes without showing so much disgusting detail. I get the sense that the creators of this film "got off" on making it. It is a poor film with grainy visuals, and it is clearly made by amateurs. .I only watched about 1/3 of it because I couldn't take it. I am really surprised that James Ellroy would be involved in a film of this nature. He has a great reputation as a writer, but my opinion of him has been diminished by his part in this film. I am interested in how the mind of a serial killer works, but I am not interested in seeing men's genitals & and entrails. There is no thrill in watching someone insert objects into someone's behind. There should be a warning on this film!
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One of the points of the film was to show clips of retired police officers and ask if they did not take the disappearances and subsequent murders of young men, presumably prostitutes, seriously. The filmmakers did exactly what they questioned police ethics about--the film, with its horrible music and interviewing a DJ who wrote a parody about the murderer made light of the horrific ordeals that the victims endured--most of whom died from the murderer's experimentation. This could have been and should have been a documentary that did not glorify the murderer through poorly acted re-enactments and remembered the victims as human beings. Poor treatment of a serious criminal and his victims.
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Format: DVD
Throughout the whole movie we're guided by homophobic presenter, James Ellroy taking quick jabs with no factual information. There really wasn't anything I enjoyed about this whatsoever. It starts off like a cheesy instructional video from the 80's and just stays that way. It's full of shameless self-promotion through which we hear terrible music by some terrible "artist". Of course there are a few factual statements taken first-hand but this is just repeated. It's more of a morbid parody with not much to offer. There are some clips from an interview with the perpetrator but that really doesn't save this. There are disgusting reenactments portrayed here complete with a "music video" from supporting trash band also portraying these clips. It seemed as though this "James Ellroy" had nothing to contribute and maybe had something, himself, to hide in his own personal life relating to the subject. Just completely ridiculous and attempts in no way to bring closure to victims nor their families. A shameful release and not worth your time nor money. This whole documentary is on YouTube if you're still curious and I admit, the way it was summarized was intriguing yet I wouldn't recommend looking into it.
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