6 user 4 critic

Killer Diller (2004)

PG-13 | | Drama, Music | March 2004 (USA)
A guitar playing car thief meets an autistic savant piano player, and together they transform a group of reluctant halfway house convicts into The Killer Diller Blues Band.



(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast overview, first billed only:
J.R. Cox
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Lawrence Lowe ...
Jared Tyler ...
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Deputy Rhodell Larkin
Barge Captain


A guitar playing car thief meets an autistic savant piano player, and together they transform a group of reluctant halfway house convicts into The Killer Diller Blues Band.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Trouble brought them together. The music set them free.


Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

March 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bottleneck  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$2,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


The license plate on the BOTA van reads 666 XES which is commonly known as the Mark of the Beast both numerically, and in Greek characters. See more »


Remake of The Car Kid (2002) See more »


Judge Boushay's Blues
Written by Furry Lewis
Arranged by Tree Adams
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"8 Mile" + "Rainman" + the blues + a lot of water = "Killer Diller"
17 April 2004 | by See all my reviews

I saw this at SXSW 2004 and must say it was one of the most terrible films i had the displeasure of seeing at the festival.

The story follows a young delinquent blues guitarist named Wesley who lands himself in a Baptist halfway house after getting in a barfight over a woman and his guitar. He is forced to play crappy Gospel music with a bunch of bandmembers who hate him, until he starts sneaking a little blues into their setlist. This isn't without the help of Verne, an autistic piano virtuoso named Vernon who drives an invisible car and has a sheltering father. Not only does Wesley have to earn the respect of Vernon's father and the band, get past Vernon's jam session inhibiting disorder, but he also has to deal with the band director's hatred of the devil's music: the blues.

Vernon is the wind up monkey in this movie, his social disorder turned into a quirky little personality trait that produces great comic one liners and a voice reminiscent of Billy Bob Thornton in Sling Blade. The serious issue of autism is delt with in the most dismissive and objectifying manner, and will offend some, but probably entertain many.

This movie has next to no character development, most apparent in that of this legendary black guitarist who we are to assume is the deceased mentor of Wesley and previous owner of the guitar that means so much to him. He appears in the credits, and is never mentioned (unless you want to include a brief visit to his gravestone).

This movie is cheesy beyond all recognition, and painfully predictable. The acting is at best not spectacular, and the story is beyond cliche

There are a few redeeming aspects of this movie, well two to be specific: the music in the film (props to Keb Mo and Tree Adams), and the hotness of Niki J Crawford. But sadly this isn't enough to sway me to give this terrible film a 5.

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