Article Written by: Griffin Spencer
Directed by: Joe Berlinger (Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes, Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2)
Quick Summary, Liz Kendall (Lily Collins) meets Ted Bundy (Zac Efron) at a bar one night and they immediately hit it off. She takes him back to her place and Ted spends the night, making breakfast in the morning. After some time has gone by Ted is arrested and is charged with aggravated kidnapping. While in prison serving his kidnapping case, Ted is transferred to Colorado and charged for the murder of Caryn Campbell. While all of this happens Liz refuses to believe Ted is guilty and drinks herself silly. Ted is eventually put on trail for the crimes and all types of drama ensues.
First off, Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile is a movie that really has me split. The first half of the movie is kind of a mess, but when the trials starts it becomes more coherent and enjoyable. I have heard people say that some movies have tonal issues and never really understood what they meant, but after watching Extremely Wicked I get it. This movie has some severe tonal issues in the first half. It feels like they are going for a romance movie but then throw in some thriller, with a little comedy sprinkled on top. The different genres of music they played for scene transition and background stuff doesn’t hep with the tone either. One transition has this happy go lucky music, then the next time they use music its suspenseful, it just doesn’t really feel right. Once they get to the trial of Ted Bundy the tone seems to smooth out and they are going for more suspense, thriller. If the whole movie followed the tone of the second half I think I would have enjoyed the movie much more.
The performance’s where probably the best part about this movie. Zac Efron does a very good job of a crazy killer. Having watched The Ted Bundy Tapes (directed by the same guy) Zac does Bundy’s mannerisms and emotions very well. Lily Collins also does a pleasant job as Bundy’s lover, Liz Kendall. The way her character feels all this guilt and anger about Ted is portrayed very well by Lily. This filmmakers say this movie is supposed to be about Liz and how she deals with Ted, but Zac really steals the show and makes this movie all about Ted. I feel like if they did this in a mini-series instead of a movie it would have worked better. They just try to cram too much in and do not spend enough time with Liz as she deals with Ted’s current situation. If it was a mini-series I think it would have flowed better and would be more enjoyable, kind of like Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes.
Overall Extremely Wicked is a decent movie that you could have some fun with. I’d recommend streaming this on a rainy day or a slow Sunday afternoon, it is just a good movie to kill time with. It suffers from severe tonal issues in the beginning, but is held together by a strong performance from Efron. The director, Joe Berlinger, does an okay job, but I feel like he does documentaries better. Considering this is only his second feature film he does a decent job. I just think this whole idea would have worked better as a mini-series.
That is all from me for now, but what did you guys think of Shockingly Evil? Did you think it did a good job or is there something you wish was done differently? Let me know what you thought in the comments. Stay tuned to the Blam Bros for more blammin’ content.