A ten year old girl is found brutally murdered outside the small blue-collar city of Rochester, New York, and obsessed police detective Megan Paige (Eliza Dushku of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER and DOLLHOUSE) suffers a mental ... more »breakdown while trying to solve the crime. But when the child-killings resume two years later, Megan?s return to the investigation also brings back her own horrific hallucinations. Even if she can prove a ?double initial? connection to the slayings, will she hang onto her sanity long enough to catch a psychopath? Cary Elwes (SAW), Michael Ironside (STARSHIP TROOPERS), Bill Moseley (THE DEVIL?S REJECTS), Carl Lumbly (ALIAS) and Academy AwardŽ winner Timothy Hutton co-star in this chilling thriller directed by Rob Schmidt.« less
C. Christopher Blackshere | I am the devil's reject | 02/11/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"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.
Eh....it was okay
alaskanseminole | San Antonio, Texas | 07/31/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Well, it's hard for me to give a movie more than three stars if I can figure out the ending (right down to the smallest detail) mid way through. This movie wanted to be good, it really did. It wanted to hang with the likes of se7en and Silence of the Lambs (given that's a really big "want"), but in the end this movie will dwindle into renter's obscurity.
The director, Rob Schmidt, does manage a few intriguing moments coupled with a touch of suspense, but if you really pay attention you'll solve this riddle with ease.
On a side note, I still can't take Cary Elwes seriously. He was great in movies like "Robinhood: Men in Tights" and the classic "The Princess Bride", but movies like Saw left me laughing hysterically when I should have been cringing with fear and angst (the desperate reaching for the phone scene still makes me laugh). Albeit his performance here was much better than Saw, I still struggle with him in serious roles. As for Timothy Hutton and Eliza Dushku, both are strong actors and did the best they could with what they were given.
In the end I'm rating this film 3 stars (would have been 2.5 had it not followed an even worse film--HORSEMAN staring Dennis Quaid. More to follow on that travesty!) "
A. Lynn Bowman | Modesto, CA United States | 02/28/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The reason I bought the movie was because it has a buff scene of Eliza Dushku, what I got was a surprisingly good thriller. Not the best movie I have ever scene, not in the top 50, but it was entertaining, the acting was good, and it was suspenseful, defiantly worth a look."
The alphabet killer
William H. Wood | Phoenix, NY | 03/18/2010
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I gave it a 2 star rating because it didn't really get into the killings. I lived in Rochester, NY back then. It all happened around the time my daughter was born. I knew a uncle to one of the girls. Yes, to this date they have not found the killer. It had the whole city in such a state that people from all walks of life were afraid for thier children. This movie could have more about the killings but, it's a good movie to watch."
GOOD IDEA! OK FILM!
! MR. KNOW IT ALL ;-b | TRI STATE AREA | 01/25/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I liked this little serial killer film because it had a nice little twist and some disturbing images. The idea of the detective who is wrapped up in this murder case going insane is very intriguing as we don't know if she is actually going insane or if the victims are actually talking to her. The director does a decent job of trying to keep us guessing by throwing the usual suspects in our path, but in the end I figured it out before the killer was revealed.....ah you thought you could fool Mr. Know It All!? ....I think NOT! Regardless this is better than average for this kind of thing and I liked the ending."