5.6/10
1,780
10 user 11 critic

How to Be a Serial Killer (2008)

A serial killer decides to teach the secrets of his satisfying career to a video store clerk.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Bart
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Narrator (voice)
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Thug #1 (as Ryan K. Smith)
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Rob
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Storyline

A serial killer decides to teach the secrets of his satisfying career to a video store clerk.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, grisly images and language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

15 November 2008 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Apla mathimata gia epidoxous dolofonous  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$899 (USA) (24 July 2009)

Gross:

$899 (USA) (24 July 2009)
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(European Film Market)

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Charles Manson is not a serial killer in that he never personally killed anyone; he only ordered the killings. See more »

Connections

References Hitch (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
I think I Laughed Once
1 August 2014 | by See all my reviews

I don't even remember when I laughed. That is not a good sign when the good jokes aren't even memorable.

Now, understand that I have nothing against this movie's premise. A comedy about a serial killer could've worked, as could a movie analyzing a serial killer's delusion about himself and what he does. However, this movie tries to be both. As such, it was impossible for me to take the serious bits seriously due to the attempts at comedy and the comedic bits aren't exaggerated enough for me NOT to take them seriously. If you want to be comedic, be comedic. If you want to be serious, be serious. Don't try to meet halfway. The only point where I started taking the film completely seriously was at the end during the climax, and even then I didn't like what I was seeing.

While I held high hopes for this movie at the beginning thanks to its title, those hopes were quickly dashed when we were introduced to our resident serial killer, Mike. Now, nothing against the actor, but in a comedy with as dark a subject matter as this, there is no place for people. And that's my main problem with Mike: the film tries too hard to portray him as a normal person while forgetting that comedy comes from the abnormal, the twisted, and the weird. Mike wasn't any of those things. He was just "normal", and as such, the movie's attempts to portray his character comically fall flat. Then again, maybe I was supposed to take them seriously, but because of the unclear tone the movie had I was unsure whether I was supposed to laugh or be horrified. Most of the time I was horrified.

Despite that, while I might not have liked this movie, I let it keep two additional stars on the merit of its premise and the fact that while the problems in this movie are big ones, they're hardly rage-inducing.

And please, if you're going to make a movie about a serial killer, go full-bore. Don't try to meet the two ends of the spectrum halfway.


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