5.6/10
8,623
130 user 27 critic

Dahmer (2002)

Trailer
2:18 | Trailer

Watch for Free

on IMDb Freedive

ON DISC
ALL
Biopic about notorious American serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, taking place in both the past and the present.

Director:

David Jacobson

Writer:

David Jacobson
3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Gacy (Video 2003)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

Model citizen, devoted father, loving husband and serial killer John Wayne Gacy - a man with over 30 dead men and boys entombed in the crawl space underneath his family house. Based on a true story.

Director: Clive Saunders
Stars: Mark Holton, Adam Baldwin, Tom Waldman
Bundy (2002)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The story of serial killer Ted Bundy.

Director: Matthew Bright
Stars: Michael Reilly Burke, Boti Bliss, Julianna McCarthy
Biography | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A young Jeffrey Dahmer struggles to belong in high school.

Director: Marc Meyers
Stars: Ross Lynch, Alex Wolff, Anne Heche
Ed Gein (2000)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

The story of Ed Gein, who dug up the corpses of over a dozen women and made things out of their remains before finally shooting two people to death and butchering their bodies like beef sides.

Director: Chuck Parello
Stars: Steve Railsback, Carrie Snodgress, Carol Mansell
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Based on the life of notorious serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, who murdered 17 men and ate many of them before he was caught in 1991.

Director: David R. Bowen
Stars: Carl Crew, Cassidy Phillips, Donna Stewart Bowen
The Hunt for the BTK Killer (TV Movie 2005)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

After 31 years at-large, detectives in Wichita, Kansas home in on the serial killer known as BTK.

Director: Stephen Kay
Stars: Robert Forster, Michael Michele, Maury Chaykin
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Renner ... Jeffrey Dahmer
Bruce Davison ... Lionel Dahmer
Artel Great ... Rodney (as Artel Kayaru)
Matt Newton ... Lance Bell
Dion Basco ... Khamtay
Kate Williamson ... Grandma
Christina Payano Christina Payano ... Letitia
Tom'ya Bowden Tom'ya Bowden ... Shawna
Sean Blakemore ... Corliss
Mickey Swenson Mickey Swenson ... Officer Phillips
Julius Branca Julius Branca ... Officer Powell
Pierson Blaetz Pierson Blaetz ... Officer Martin
Vincent Zangari Vincent Zangari ... Ohio Officer
Xavier Lawrence Xavier Lawrence ... Young Man in Bar
David Manis ... Shop Steward
Edit

Storyline

Before his arrest and conviction for serial murders, chocolate factory worker Jeffrey Dahmer hunts Milwaukee, Wisconsin, for young attractive males to turn into unconscious (eventually dead) human sex toys, current acts which often prompt memories of earlier killings and of dealings with his suspicious but unaware father. Written by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The mind is a place of its own.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for aberrant violence, sexuality, language and some drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 March 2003 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Mind Is a Place of Its Own See more »

Filming Locations:

San Francisco, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$16,093, 21 June 2002, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$144,008, 11 August 2002
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Kathryn Bigelow wanted to cast Jeremy Renner for Sgt William James in The Hurt Locker (2008) in large part due to his performance in this film. See more »

Goofs

When Rodney falls while dancing with the skeleton, first it's on top of him, then it's to his side, and then it's on top of him again. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Title Card: On February 15, 1992 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer was convicted of 15 counts of murder and sentenced to 937 years of federal prison. The following story was inspired by events from his life. Certain characters and events are fictional.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Though the names of Jeffrey Dahmer's victims were changed in this biopic, details of his killing methods were used; yet, the film's closing disclaimer states that any similarities to the history of any actual person, living or dead, or any actual event is entirely coincidental and unintentional. See more »

Connections

References Bonnie and Clyde (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

You're Movin' Me
Performed by Clyde McPhatter
Written by Brook Benton and Clyde Otis
Used by permission from Iza Music
Administered by The Clyde Otis Music Group
Courtesy of The Clyde Otis Music Group
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A good, compelling, underrated piece of cinema
17 January 2003 | by mattymatt4everSee all my reviews

People seem really disgusted by the film, but the only thing that disgusts me are the negative reviews. This is a very well-made film that was put together on a very low budget. Films like this always have the immediate handicap of focusing not only on an evil, psychotic main character, but focusing on an evil, psychotic main character who we all know. There weren't too many complaints about "The Talented Mr. Ripley" (a great film) focusing on a psychopath, but that's because Tom Ripley is a fictional character. Like everybody, I believe that what Jeffrey Dahmer did was wrong, and I feel sorry for all the families who lost sons and other relatives due to him. But this movie was not made to portray him as a hero, nor a villain. It's meant to portray him as a person. We all know about the crimes that Dahmer committed. But we don't know about Dahmer himself. We don't what drove Dahmer to madness, and what led up to the subsequent rapes, murders and eventual cannibalism. And the movie doesn't try to shock us with gory details of these grisly occurrences, because that's not its intention. There's no use showing us what we already know.

I found this biopic deeply fascinating. I learned a lot about Dahmer that I never knew previously. I can't say I relate to him that much, other than being lonely and an only child, but that didn't stop me from seeing how he was as a human being. While watching the film, I said to myself, "How come we don't learn much about his family life?" Maybe his family life had nothing to do with choosing to be that way. Not every serial killer commits murder because he was abused as a child. From the looks of things, he had a pretty well-to-do upbringing.

What I did get a sense of was his alienation and shyness. He felt his homosexuality served as a handicap in his society. And he wasn't brilliantly sociable, so he didn't have an easy time making friends or getting guys to go out with him, or have sex with him for that matter. But his perversions took him so far that he'd walk into a gay bar and slip roofies into guys' drinks (which is shown in an extended montage), take them to the back and have sex with them as they're helpless and passed out. It's interesting to find out this can happen among homosexuals as well. There's a long history of guys slipping roofies into women's drinks to get them in the sack, so Dahmer was no different from any horny heterosexual guy, only he took it many steps further.

One thing I must criticize is the use of flashbacks. When I first watched the film, I had the impression that the whole movie was about young Jeffrey Dahmer and the story was told in a linear fashion. But after watching the featurette and watching it a second time with the commentary, I realized that the movie was bouncing back and forth from Jeffrey in his later years to Jeffrey in his earlier years. I personally didn't think slapping facial hair on him made him look much older. He still looked like he was in his twenties, so I had no hint of his aging. Once I watched it a second time, the story became much more clear to me, but others watching it for the first time might get confused as well.

I liked the use of lighting. Jeffrey's room is lit completely red, giving it almost a hell-ish appearance. And towards the end, the lighting becomes much darker, as Dahmer becomes more evil.

The performances are good all-around. Jeremy Renner does an incredible job at playing Dahmer, expressing a laundry list of emotions with his face and body language alone. I kept trying to recall where I saw him before, since his face looked very familiar, and then I checked his filmography and found out he was in "National Lampoon's Senior Trip." Of course, this movie gave him a much better opportunity at showing off his acting abilities. Talented, underrated actor Bruce Davison makes a few appearances as Dahmer's father, also doing an incredible job the 10 minutes-or-so he's on screen.

Though I found the film fascinating and thought-provoking, I still wish I could've learned a little more about what drove Dahmer to madness. The director mentioned it wasn't his intention to give backstory on Dahmer's life, and instead make it an emotional drama, but it would've made the film more interesting. But one scene that caught me completely by surprise was when young Jeffrey cringing when cutting up one of his victim's bodies and eventually bursting into tears. I'm sure his remorse decreased over the years, but I don't ever visualize a serial killer feeling shame about his victims. I saw John Liszt (sp) in an interview once and he described his methods of mutilating his victims without batting an eye. So this is not exactly the movie's cue to have the audience feel sorry for Dahmer and cry along with him, but it's enlightening to find out that had emotions as well. He was just so driven by his psychological sicknesses that his emotions couldn't hinder him.

My score: 8 (out of 10)


46 of 52 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 130 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed