Movie Review: Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile (2019)

Wicked Vile posterThe title of the movie is a direct quote from the prosecuting judge

Stars: Lily Collins, Zac Efron, Angela Sarafyan, Haley Joel Osment
Director: 
Joe Berlinger

Synopsis: Based on the true story of the capture and conviction of serial killer Ted Bundy (Zac Efron) and the affects he had on those around him including his innocent and long suffering ex-fiancé Liz (Lily Collins).

Opinion: God damn Ted Bundy was one creepy ass guy. I’ve seen so many true crime shows and read so many things about him (I like true crime okay, it’s not weird) that I was went into this film knowing the story and how everything played out but still…..so creepy! Zac Efron did a brilliant job portraying this man and his easy going and frustratingly likeable personality. We all know what Bundy did and how evil he was and yet you can see exactly how and why people flocked to him and liked him so much. But the moments of monster that randomly appear, well they are truly terrifying and Efron pulls each and every one of them off so subtly and brilliantly showing the quick transitions he would make between the two personalities and how easy it was for him. I know a lot of people were concerned when the first trailer dropped that this film was making Ted out to be too nice and too pleasant but honestly that was exactly what he was like and for this to be a completely realistic account it needed to be like that, we needed to see the man as he was with the cracks showing through the façade and the affect it had on everyone around him.
The entire cast is brilliant in fact, with a whole lot of praise also given to Lily Collins for her portrayal of Liz. The things that poor woman went through and the struggle with the fact she was so in love with this man and so in denial of all of the things but ultimately was the one who, in a roundabout way, caused his first arrest and subsequent demise. At the end of the film there are a number of clips from the actual court footage showing the various characters in real life and I hadn’t realised how word for word some parts of the script actually were. A lot of the court dialogue in fact is literally what was said during the real case and the actors/costumes/makeup all were much more accurate than I had thought it was going to be.
I have seen a few different dramatizations of the Ted Bundy story but this film is by far the best with a very well-constructed product that is entertaining, factual, interesting and horrifying. Years ago, back in those High School Musical Days, if you had told me I would be praising Zac Efron for his acting abilities I probably would have laughed at you but over the past few years he has really excelled and this movie proves that 100 times over. To all the true crime fans out there, definitely check this out and to everyone else….well check it out anyway because it’s honestly a damn good film.

Random Other: There is a decent amount of actual footage in this film from the court case and news articles from back in the day but there is also some new footage which has been shot for this film and made to look like it’s back in the day. They have also done a great job with that so there were a couple of times I found myself wondering if it was real of fake.

Rating:

Wicked Vile rating

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