CORPORATE LINE: Based on true events, THE ZODIAC is a psychological thriller detailing a string of gruesome murders in Northern California in the late 1960s. A small town cop, struggling to protect his family and coping with the explosive media frenzy, hunts the Zodiac killer, one of the most elusive and notorious serial killers in American history.
THE REVIEW: Interestingly, the son (Rory Culkin) of a cop (Justin Chambers) seems to figure out more than his dad and the FBI. That’s just one incident where the film falls apart. The story of the cop—Matt Parish—isn’t an interesting one. It’s the same story we’ve seen a million times with other killers. Even less interesting is the fact that we know how the story ends—the cop never solves the murders or finds the Zodiac. It’s a bad attempt at Silence of the Lambs where the killer gets away.
It would have been a better film had the Zodiac been a larger part of the film. It’s amazing how the man who is the Zodiac sees the world as a chaotic set of jump-cuts. So the guy might be crazy—but are we to believe he doesn’t see the world as we do? Could a killer see the world jumping around chaotically and yet shoot a gun with amazing accuracy? This is ridiculous.
The director and writer commentary is not extremely interesting because the movie itself is mostly average.
“The Zodiac letters” – This is easily the most interesting featurette because it contains the letters and codes of the Zodiac. The letters are scarier than the movie.
“Chronology of The Zodiac slayings” – Not a supremely interesting featurette because the information is available everywhere from books to television shows to internet websites.
FRANKLY: At the end of the film the Zodiac says: “”This is the Zodiac speaking … I am waiting for a good movie about me”—he’ll still waiting.
+ Charlie Craine