Unfortunately, I won't be discussing Al, Peg, Bud and Kelly.
This is the Bundy we're talking about today. And if you're asking why we're still talking about him, that's a very good question. I suppose that Ted will always be talked about because we will always be horrified by him. But here's the reason I'm talking about him again.
I finally watched Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, because even though I wasn't jumping with excitement to see Zac Efron play the infamous serial killer like many, I was still a little curious.
Honestly, though, It doesn't take much convincing when it comes to true crime, especially when it involves serial killers, because I'm interested in criminal psychology and have always loved being creeped out. But the thing about this movie is, it's not that creepy. It's not scary, it's not provocative, and it doesn't really offer any insight. This movie isn't saying anything new and therefore really didn't need to be made.
The film is based on Ted's ex-girlfriend Liz Kloepfer's book, published under the name Elizabeth Kendall, The Phantom Prince: My Life with Ted Bundy. Having not read the book myself, I was hoping for an interesting glimpse into unfamiliar territory, but everything was pretty familiar. Plus, many disturbing details about their relationship weren't even in the film, so we're basically left with a mere snippet of the fucked up relationship. While I do feel bad for Liz and consider her to be one of Bundy's surviving victims, I really didn't care for her story, or at least the way it was told in the film. It was kind of boring.
Cue the music...
I wasn't a fan of the fun, upbeat music in this film, particularly during the more "romantic" (barf) scenes. I understand what they're trying to do by showing the fantasy of what Liz thought she had with Ted coupled with the catchy music of the time, but I wasn't into it. Plus, you can't hear Joe Tex's "I Gotcha" and not think of Reservoir Dogs. What were they thinking?!
Having said all that, the film really isn't all that terrible. There certainly were some redeeming qualities. I must give credit to Zac Efron, because he did a decent job portraying Ted. While he is obviously more attractive than Bundy, which I'm sure Ted would have loved, the characteristics were there. He didn't quite make my skin crawl the way I hoped, but I think that's more because I wasn't seeing anything new. I've seen the court scenes numerous times and have even watched the entire trial on a few occasions. Don't judge.
I also appreciate how this film isn't a sensationalized gross gore fest like 2003's Ted Bundy. God, the ending of that film still makes me cringe. "I'm Ted Bundy..." No you're not, so shut the fuck up. In fact, this film doesn't give us disturbing reenactments of the murders at all. Nice for a change. On the other hand, there is one scene in particular that I fucking hate. No spoilers, but it's at the end and is completely fabricated and unnecessary. It always irks me when filmmakers do that. Why add things in just because it looks cool or seems more disturbing? Do you really need to change anything to make Bundy more disturbing? I don't think so.
I'm finally doing it--pulling my insides out and splattering them around for all to see. Here we go!