The movie opens with Ted killing someone then jumps forward to him in his cell awaiting the chair. A news reporter outside the jail tries to explain who Ted Bundy really is: “you’ve gotta go back a few years to really understand who he was”… Erm, okay… Cue flashback…
Oh dear, I think they’re trying to give us a back story or, God forbid, an understanding as to why little Ted grew up to be big bad Ted. We start with little Ted reading gruesome comic books intercut with him scouring black circles repeatedly with thick crayon; all this happening with his broken home family bickering in the background. Rubbish.
Jump forward to 1966, teenage Ted is studying law at Wisconsin University with his older girlfriend, Stephanie, their relationship is a ‘secret’… through some lame montage and awful music we see them have some ups and downs until Ted ejaculates in his pants and misses a dinner date with her parents (they are unconnected events!). Stephanie dumps him and Ted doesn’t take it too well… “You’re immature she tells him”
Ted reads his family history at the public records office… the file is stamped: ‘Illegitimate’ Ted doesn’t take that too well either.
Cue Bad Ted, killing someone in the desert. To the movie’s credit the killing is not played for gratuitous kicks, it is brutal and bleak, we never see the blows land and the scene is played without music and all the more disturbing for it. We feel for the victim.
In 1971 Ted has job as a counsellor at the Seattle Crisis Centre. He has a ‘gift’ to talk to the callers says one of his co-workers. Of course he does, he’s far more fucked in the head than any of his depressed callers, their issues are nothing compared to what’s going through his demented mind.
Another montage with another lame song, this time though we see bad Ted kidnap and kill his next few victims, Ted is getting better at it… the director isn’t.
1973. Ted is working for Senator Ross Davis in Washington State. If you think about it, Ted’s perfect for politics, a missed opportunity there perhaps. Ted then meets up with Stephanie in San Francisco, cue another lame song montage. Ted proposes to her over dinner, she’s so happy; obviously Ted doesn’t mess up his trousers anymore. Ted excuses himself to go to the bathroom and doesn’t return. We then have to watch the longest time lapse scene EVER watching Stephanie wait for him… For a movie based on the life of one of Americas most prolific, notorious and allegedly charming serial killers you’d think there were more interesting scenes to show… This is followed by yet another lame song montage of Ted driving around the desert. I can handle the scenes of violence but these songs would drive anyone to murder.
Anyway, Ted falls asleep in his car, is hassled by the ‘man’ and arrested… for the first time. He escapes through the air vents.
Jump forward to 1978, Ted loses it big time and kills two girls in their dorm beds. On his way home Ted kills again.
Cut to Ted speaking to some reporters outside a courtroom; he’s been charged with the 1978 dorm murders and is going to be representing himself in court… Ted’s such a good lawyer that he’s sentenced to death in the electric chair.
In his cell the Warden tells him: “You’re whiny and immature Ted” Ooh, full circle ‘n’ shit…
Directed by Michael Feifer, the film looks and generally feels like what it is, a cheap exploitation movie. Corin Nemec is not at all believable, Bundy was supposed to be intelligent and charming. If he was anything like he’s portrayed here he’d have been arrested a lot earlier. Kane Hodder as the Warden is okay but should stick to wearing a hockey mask.
If you want a well told Bundy story, look out for TV movie ‘The Deliberate Stranger’ (1986) starring Mark Harmon, yes that Mark Harmon from NCIS, I know he’s a terrible actor but he’s DeNiro when compared to Corin Memic. That movie doesn’t treat us like idiots and is very good.
You should also buy the Nothing’s Shocking CD by Janes Addiction and listen to the track: ‘Ted, Just Admit It’ because it”s excellent.
Quality of Film: 1 out of 5 stars
Is it any good: 1 out of 5 stars