Director – David Jacobson (Tomorrow You’re Gone, Down in the Valley)
Starring – Jeremy Renner (The Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier), Bruce Davison (X-Men, Creepshow), and Artel Great (Save the Last Dance, 24)
Release Date – 2002
Rating – 2.5/5
Blu Release – 3/5
It’s weird how you can look back at times and remember what was your favorite movies during certain parts of your life. When I was in high school I was obsessed with Night of the Living Dead (original and Savini’s remake), Dawn of the Dead (the remake would come out in a few years), and the Evil Dead trilogy. However, the movies Cemetery Man, Zombie 2, The Dead Next Door, Skinned Alive, House of 1000 Corpses, and Ed Gein (not the Kane Hodder flick) would play a huge part of my life during this years.
My close friend was a huge fan of the Ed Gein film and we would often watch it. I really enjoyed it but he was borderline obsessed with it. This love opened the door to other serial killer flicks from around the same time. Movies like Gacy, Dahmer, Bundy, and The Hunt for the BTK Killer. A few days ago I was surprised to get the 2002 film Dahmer from MVD for review. This Jeremy Renner starring film was released as part of their MVD Marquee line. Thanks MVD for sending this one over!
**Spoiler Alert** The film follows factory worker Jeffrey Dahmer (Renner) who lures gay men to his apartment with promises of alcohol where he drugs them. Once unconscious, he fulfills his sexual desires and curiosities with them which sometimes triggers flashbacks to previous exploits and adventures that lead him to this point in his life. **Spoiler Alert**
I remember watching Dahmer a few times when I was in high school but I don’t remember my impressions of the film. However, after revisiting it all these years later I have to say that I honestly didn’t care for it. There is several things that the film did right but the overall film was just messing and chaotic.
The acting in this one is pretty well done. Renner has made a name for himself as an amazing actor with starring power but the relatively unknown Renner in 2002 delivered a phenomenal job as the notorious serial killer. The supporting cast is solid and deliver some noteworthy performances but Renner really brings it home with his portrayal of the deranged and calculating killer.
The story for this one is not in chronological order and told in a series of flashbacks. They are unpredictable and break the flow of the film up. The scene starts out by setting itself up and setting the tone then completely derails itself with a flashback. There has to be another way to approach the flashbacks without destroying the integrity of the film.
Finally, this film inspired by one of the most notorious serial killers in America history is rather dry of blood. The film is very character and story driven which spends most of the film getting to know Dahmer and not really how he did what he did so those wanting blood will be disappointed. Overall, Dahmer is a bit of a let down. It has some entertaining moments but the story is a bit messy and the lack of blood really makes it a tough one to finish. The blu does look good and, as a collector, I really like having it on my shelf but I doubt I will be revisiting it.