Review: Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile

Extremely long title.

Notorious murderer Ted Bundy's (Zac Efron) story is told through the eyes of his one time girlfriend, Liz. (Lily Collins) 

I'll never forget the first time I read about Ted Bundy. His crimes were so horrific I don't even want to think about them. Making a movie about someone this disgusting isn't easy, but director Joe Berlinger goes about it in the most restrained way possible.

We're spared the gory recreations of his crimes, thank God. Most of this film focuses on his time in various courts, and his time with Liz, who dated him for years.

Lily Collins is incredible here. She was strong in To The Bone but this might actually top that, and it's easily the best performance Zac Efron has ever given. It was nice to see him step out of his comfort zone, but it also presents one very large problem.

Ted Bundy would fucking love that Zac Efron is playing him because Efron is arguably very good looking. See, the narrative around Bundy during his trial was that he was "hot" and had all these crazy women swooning over him in court when the reality is that Bundy was average. That's why he got away with these murders for so long. Because he was completely unremarkable. So having someone like Efron, who gets a moment in the film to show off how sculpted his body is rubbed me the wrong way because it's buying into glorifying Bundy.

I was wary about this movie going in but it was very well done despite it's problems with portraying Bundy. I appreciate that it wasn't gratuitous and I love most of the cast. Especially Collins and Efron getting to spread their wings a bit.

Recommended: Yes

Grade: B-

Memorable Quote: "What happened to her head?" - Liz (Lily Collins)


Comments

  1. How do you feel about Zac Efron in a Scooby-Doo movie?

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  2. I have thoughts about seeing it but I don't know. I do like Zac Efron and Lily Collins and the story of Ted Bundy has always interested me.

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    1. It's not a bad watch, if you've already read up a lot on Bundy I'd say it's definitely worth your time.

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  3. When Ted Bundy was caught, he was considered very good looking when you compare him to other serial killers. He seemed to be charming, smiling to the press blah, blah....he gave me the creeps and I couldn’t understand why a. Many women were liking how he looked and sending him fan mail and b. The news media liking him too much and playing up to that. I’m not surprised that they chose this kid even though I’m not sure I want to see it. There was a 2 part( or was it 3??) starring Mark Harmon who was a big heart throb back in the day and was given major credos by the critics for his portrayal...and it was deserved.

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    1. I just don't see it. Dude was a plain jane, but I guess if you're putting him into the context of other serial killers he probably looked less like one.

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  4. Maybe it's just physically impossible for Zac not to have the abs and all of that? :D

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    Replies
    1. Maybe they couldn't afford a mini version of Thor's fatsuit. lol

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  5. I completely agree with you, I thought this was quite tastefully done considering how it could have been. You are so right about what Ted Bundy would think of Zac Efron playing him! The thought never crossed my mind.

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    1. I kind of wish I wouldn't have been thinking about it. lol

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  6. Hmmm I have this on my list to watch soon. To be honest I don't know a whole lot about Bundy, it is odd, I am into very dark stuff yet I've never really read about serial killers. So all this will be new to me, do you think I need any prior knowledge, other than he was a murderer?

    It is interesting that you commented on Bundy and Zac'a looks. I don't really know what either look like but I find it interesting that you described Bundy as 'average'.

    Hehe as a guy I don't know what that means exactly but it is interesting in that you said that was a reason he was able to do whatever he did, cos he was unremarkable. Very interesting. I guess I'll be learning a thing or two from this movie!

    Great review btw, some great points, especially the one above.

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    1. That's always been my take on it. Had he actually be drop dead gorgeous I think they would've found him a lot quicker.

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  7. Love your take on Efron playing Bundy. The movie definitely played him up as much as it could.

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