IMDb > Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986)
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer
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Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) More at IMDbPro »

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Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer -- Based on the true life serial killer, Henry Lee Lucas.

Overview

User Rating:
7.1/10   20,260 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Richard Fire (written by) &
John McNaughton (written by)
Contact:
View company contact information for Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
September 1990 (USA) See more »
Tagline:
The shocking true story of Henry Lee Lucas. See more »
Plot:
Based on the true life serial killer, Henry Lee Lucas. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
10 wins & 7 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(235 articles)
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User Reviews:
A Movie To Keep You Up At Night... See more (200 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Mary Demas ... Dead Woman / Dead Prostitute / Hooker #1

Michael Rooker ... Henry
Anne Bartoletti ... Waitress
Elizabeth Kaden ... Dead Couple - Wife
Ted Kaden ... Dead Couple - Husband
Denise Sullivan ... Floating Woman
Anita Ores ... Mall Shopper #1
Megan Ores ... Mall Shopper #2
Cheri Jones ... Mall Shopper #3
Monica Anne O'Malley ... Mall Victim
Bruce Quist ... Husband
Erzsebet Sziky ... Hitchiker
Tracy Arnold ... Becky
Tom Towles ... Otis
David Katz ... Henry's Boss
John Scafidi ... Kid with Football #1
Benjamen Passman ... Kid with Football #2
Flo Spink ... Woman in Cadillac

Kurt Naebig ... High School Jock
Kristin Finger ... Hooker #2
Lily Monkus ... Woman in Beauty Shop
Ray Atherton ... Fence
Eric Young ... Parole Officer
Rick Paul ... Shooting Victim

Peter Van Wagner ... Bum #1
Tom McKearn ... Bum #2
Frank Coronado ... Bum #3 (as Frank Coranado)

Lisa Temple ... Murdered Family - Wife
Brian Graham ... Murdered Family - Husband
Sean Ores ... Murdered Family - Son
Pamela Fox ... Hair Stylist
Waleed B. Ali ... Store Clerk
Donna Dunlap ... Dog Walker
Augie the Dog ... Delores

Directed by
John McNaughton 
 
Writing credits
Richard Fire (written by) &
John McNaughton (written by)

Produced by
Malik B. Ali .... executive producer
Waleed B. Ali .... executive producer
Lisa Dedmond .... producer
Steven A. Jones .... producer
John McNaughton .... producer
 
Original Music by
Ken Hale 
Steven A. Jones 
Robert McNaughton 
 
Cinematography by
Charlie Lieberman (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Elena Maganini 
 
Casting by
Jeffery Lyle Segal 
 
Art Direction by
Rick Paul 
 
Costume Design by
Patricia Hart 
 
Makeup Department
Michael J. Alonzi .... makeup effects crew
Chuck Gatz .... hair stylist
Herb Nordheimer .... makeup effects crew
Bernd Rantscheff .... makeup artist (as Berndt Rantscheff)
Jeffery Lyle Segal .... special makeup effects artist
Scott Whitehead .... makeup effects crew
 
Production Management
Lisa Dedmond .... production manager
Steven A. Jones .... post-production supervisor
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Andrew Bradburn .... second assistant director
Paul Chen .... first assistant director
 
Art Department
Frank Coronado .... storyboard artist
Rick Paul .... property master
Rick Paul .... set dresser
 
Sound Department
Cory Coken .... sound editor
Ric Coken .... post-production sound mixer (as Rick Coken)
Dan Haberkorn .... sound effects
Elena Maganini .... post-production sound editor
Jim Moore .... rerecording assistant
Louie Quiroz .... assistant post-production sound mixer
Steve Wilburn .... sound re-recording assistant
Thomas T. Yore .... sound recordist
 
Special Effects by
Lee Ditkowski .... technical effects
 
Stunts
Paul M. Lane .... stunts
David Woolley .... fight coordinator
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Dave Buckley .... grip
Brian Graham .... grip
Dave Mahlman .... assistant camera
Paul Petraitis .... still photographer
Bernd Rantscheff .... still photographer (as Berndt Rantscheff)
Bradley Sellers .... assistant camera (as Brad Sellars)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Patricia Hart .... wardrobe
 
Music Department
Steven A. Jones .... musical director
 
Other crew
Richard Fire .... acting coach
Melanie Hecht .... script supervisor
Steven A. Jones .... title designer
David Le Boy .... title designer (as David LeBoy)
Bradley Magon .... production assistant
 
Thanks
Kevin Dougherty .... special thanks
Greg Doyle .... special thanks
Tommy Dubois .... special thanks
Mic Fabus .... special thanks
Neil Flynn .... special thanks (as Neal Flynn)
Judith Gold .... acknowledgment: Chuck Gatz courtesy of
Steven Hager .... special thanks
Larry Hart .... special thanks
Bob Jorgenson .... special thanks
Jeanette Jorgenson .... special thanks
C.J. Kavooras .... special thanks
Alex Kerr .... special thanks
Charles Michaels .... special thanks
Becky Passman .... special thanks
Elizabeth Passman .... special thanks
Paul Petraitis .... special thanks
Wendy Sander .... special thanks
Mike Sandlass .... special thanks
Laura Storto .... special thanks
Barb Sun .... special thanks
Greg Sun .... special thanks
Pat Thompson .... special thanks
Cath Whitney .... special thanks
James Young .... special thanks
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
83 min | Australia:77 min | Norway:78 min | Sweden:78 min | Italy:75 min (edited for TV)
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:18 | Australia:R (uncut) (2005) | Canada:18+ (Quebec) | Chile:18 | Finland:K-18 (uncut) (DVD rating) (2001) | Finland:K-16 (cut) (1998) | Finland:K-18 (cut) (1997) | Finland:(Banned) (1992) | Finland:K-18 (cut) (1992) | France:-16 (with warning) | Iceland:16 (original rating) | Iceland:(Banned) (video rating) | Ireland:18 | Italy:VM18 (1992) | Netherlands:16 | New Zealand:R18 (cut) | New Zealand:(Banned) (uncut) | Norway:18 | Portugal:M/18 | South Korea:18 | Sweden:15 | Sweden:18 (original DVD rating) | UK:18 | USA:Unrated | USA:X (original rating) (rating surrendered) | West Germany:18
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Director John McNaughton originally intended to shoot the entire film with a hand-held camera, so as to give it the look and feel of a fly-on-the-wall documentary. He had hired Jean de Segonzac to work as the director of photography as de Segonzac was regarded as one of the world's foremost hand-held cameramen. However, a week before filming began, de Segonzac had to drop out of the project, and McNaughton was left without a director of photography. He subsequently hired Charlie Lieberman, who had shot a number of half hour substance abuse programs, and together, McNaughton and Lieberman decided to abandon the hand-held idea and go in the opposite direction; never using a hand-held camera at all, and ensuring very exact, very rigid framing throughout the film.See more »
Goofs:
Revealing mistakes: In the opening shot of the movie of a woman's body, the "dead" woman (Mary Demas) takes a few breaths towards the end of the shot, as seen by the movement of her stomach. The filmmakers point this out in the commentary, and show additional footage in the outtakes.See more »
Quotes:
Otis:I'd like to kill somebody.
Henry:Say that again.
Otis:I'd like to kill somebody.
Henry:Let's me and you go for a ride, Otis
See more »
Soundtrack:
No Father in the FamilySee more »

FAQ

Did Henry really kill his mother?
What are the deleted scenes on the DVD?
Is this film available on Blu-ray?
See more »
11 out of 12 people found the following review useful.
A Movie To Keep You Up At Night..., 4 December 2008
Author: Christopher T. Chase (cchase@onebox.com) from Arlington, VA.

When I had the chance to see HENRY 2, I wasn't really sure if I had seen the first one, because so much time has passed since its release and the commotion it caused back in '86. Now having had the chance to see the 20th Anniversary Edition from Dark Sky Films, I'm not so sure that I didn't remember it, as much as I didn't WANT to remember...

John McNaughton presented the indie world with his calling card via this film, and simultaneously raised the bar for what "realism" is in these kinds of horror movies. And where the true horror lies is the way in which it deconstructs and de-glamorizes the image that Hollywood has created for serial killers. This is not a chronicle of a super-intelligent monster like Hannibal Lecter, or even the "channeled" virtuosity of a "noble" murderer like Dexter Morgan.

This could be anybody you walked past down the street yesterday, or saw at the stop light on the way home from work. And make no mistake about it...he works at a job, pays rent and buys groceries like anybody else. And if you happen to catch yourself alone with him at the wrong time, the next time anyone will ever see you again is at the morgue. Count on it.

Based loosely on the exploits of multiple murderer Henry Lee Lucas, HENRY was the breakout role for Michael Rooker (SLITHER), and together with co-stars Tom Towles as his dim-witted sidekick, Otis and Tracy Arnold as Otis' emotionally blasted sister, Becky, they paint a documentary-style picture under McNaughton's guidance, of how some people living on the fringes of society behave. This doesn't necessarily mean that they're wild-eyed, foaming-at-the-mouth-crazy, and therein lies the scariest part of all. These are the kind of blue-collar, salt-of-the-earth types that you might dismiss without giving a second thought...but the time might come when you do so at your own peril.

From the opening frames of the movie, you know you're in territory that's far removed from the usual slasher film. Henry is seen doing mundane, everyday things - buying cigarettes, finishing lunch at a local diner - and juxtaposed with those scenes are absolutely horrific shots of dead, mutilated bodies, as the sounds of how they died careen and crash underneath the discordant music along the soundtrack. Sorry, kids, but this isn't THE Texas CHAINSAW MASSACRE. In that picture, as within this one, a time and place is firmly established. But if you don't live in Texas, part of you can sort of remove yourself from the horror that wants to seep into your subconscious and stay there.

With HENRY, it becomes obvious that the locale is somewhere in metropolitan Chicago, but the urban landscape is familiar enough that it could be Atlanta, Detroit, Boston, New York, anywhere. It could be the city where YOU live now.

And by writing the characters and the events they're involved in with a totally detached, non-judgmental eye, McNaughton and writing partner Richard Fire reveal a horror more numbing and penetrating than a thousand Freddy Kruegers or Michael Myers. There are people in the world who actually do these kinds of things, and they're out there NOW...and it's only by the grace of providence or some cosmic lottery that we've won, that we don't ever run into these people...or that some of us unfortunately do.

Enough has already been written about the remarkable performances of all the actors involved, so the only thing I can add is that if you've never seen HENRY, you need to watch it all the way through at least once. I can safely say that you will see why horror is the way it is today, and how so many filmmakers have misinterpreted what director McNaughton was saying with HENRY.

With the searing images still fresh in my mind, I can only say this...I feel like I need to take about a hundred hot showers, and none of it will ever wash away how nasty and horrible it made me feel. Which I believe is exactly what the makers of this film were trying to accomplish.

I sincerely hope that once you've seen this, you would feel the same. And I would be really worried about anybody who doesn't, or worse, who said they "enjoyed" it.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (200 total) »

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psychopath or sociopath? ollie_l_17
Henry's mother gonelunch1
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