4/10
Darker role for Micky Dolenz in missed opportunity for murder mystery about race relations
22 April 2018
There are seeds of a good film here in a story about a man, The Monkees' Micky Dolenz, who disowns his sister after learning she is pregnant with boyfriend's baby because her boyfriend is black. The sister is later found murdered, which leads Dolenz and a black priest to investigate the murder, which has been disguised as a suicide, trying to find an individual with a peace-sign belt buckle who they suspect is the culprit. There could have been some interesting commentaries on race relations with this kind of a set-up, but the film is basically a cash grab exploiting the real-life Boston Strangler, who still at-large, and following a big budget Hollywood production a few years before about the Boston Strangler. Never mind that no characters are actually strangled and the story has nothing to do with that case. It's a super cheap production without any real scares or suspense, so there's not a lot to recommend outside of the novelty value of seeing Micky Dolenz is a very un-Monkees-like role. Well, he is still a bit of a 1960s hipster/hippie, but he plays a much darker character than his Monkees Micky character. Overall, "The Night of the Strangler" is a forgettable quickie low-budget picture that offers a darker role for Micky Dolenz, but is a missed opportunity for murder mystery about race relations.
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