Based on the true story of '60s thrill-killer Charles Schmid ("The Pied Piper of Tucson"), Skipper Todd (Robert F. Lyons) is a charismatic 23-year old who charms his way into the lives of ...
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Based on the true story of '60s thrill-killer Charles Schmid ("The Pied Piper of Tucson"), Skipper Todd (Robert F. Lyons) is a charismatic 23-year old who charms his way into the lives of high school kids in a small California town. Girls find him attractive and are only too willing to accompany him to a nearby desert area to be his "girl for the night." Not all of them return, however. Featuring Richard Thomas as his loyal hanger-on and a colorful assortment of familiar actors in vivid character roles including Barbara Bel Geddes, Gloria Grahame, Edward Asner, Fay Spain, James Broderick and Michael Conrad. Written by
Do you have relations with men?
I try not to. But sometimes there's a guy who's really sweet... it's so easy. We're both men... we both know where it's at. Personally, you not giving anything away.
What's your feeling's towards girls?
I can sleep with them once because it degrades them. It makes them dirty. The worst thing about it is... you meet a chick who isn't... bad. You can't screw her because you don't want to make her "dirty".
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Based loosely on real life killer, Charles Schmidt (sp?), the Pied Piper of Tucson, 'The Todd Killings' is a marvelous, underrated gem.
There is much to love about this movie. The cast are terrific. Most notable are the lead performances; Robert F. Lyons is truly outstanding, infusing his character with a giddy mix of indifference and charm. He manages to seduce the girls, impress the guys and squirm his way through a police interrogation with absolute ease.
Praise must go to the gorgeous Belinda Montgomery (Doogie Howser's mom). She looks thoroughly enticing and gives a soft, natural performance that looks like it was bathed in 70's sunshine.
Adding to the pleasure is the location shooting, making full use of what appears to be a small, sleepy Northern California town. One notable highlight being Skipper and Billy at a Jack in the Box restaurant - complete with an old-school JB clown logo and the menu displaying stupidly low prices (35 cents for a hamburger).
But this is no mere exploitation flick. The filmmakers have taken care with every detail and it shows. The relationship between Skipper and his Mom is perfectly addressed while she nobly attempts to defend him in the face of an angry mother accusing Skipper of hiding information on her daughter's whereabouts. Their two worlds are miles apart.
There is much to go on about here, but in the end, I simply can't recommend this film highly enough. This is the real deal.
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