My Friend Dahmer (2017)
Director: Mark Meyers, United States
Producers: Mark Meyers, Jody Girgenti
Screenplay: Mark Meyers
Date Released: November 3rd 2017 (US)
Ross Lynch as Dahmer
Rating = 3/5 Graves
As you would expect, My Friend Dahmer, is based off the life of the serial killer, Jeffery Dahmer. Dahmer was an infamous murderer, necrophile and cannibal who killed seventeen men throughout the span of 1978 up until his arrest in 1991. With all of the aforementioned titles that Dahmer holds, you might expect the film to be a full-out gory horror fest. However, this is not the case. My Friend Dahmer is the story of the life of Jeffrey Dahmer from childhood up until his very first kill at the age of 18. It begins with a teenage Dahmer growing up in 1974 in Bath, Ohio with his father, Lionel, a chemist, his mother, Joyce and his younger brother Dave. The film then progresses with Jeffrey’s infatuation with a male jogger that passes by him everyday. He discovers that his sexual desires are different from the rest of his friends, and this, of course, causes him great distress. The film ends while Jeffrey is on his way to commit his first murder at the tender age of 18.
There is no blood or gore that one would expect from a film about Jeffrey Dahmer. However, there are subtle, disturbing scenes throughout the film.
The Grave review
My Friend Dahmer is an American biographical drama directed and produced by Mark Meyers and released on November 3rd 2017.
Right off the bat, the film effectively depicts Jeffery’s personality and character. He is a reserved and quiet high school boy who gives off an apathetic and indifferent attitude towards school, friends and life in general. The only thing that seems to enlighten the young Dahmer is his increasingly obsessive interest in biology, human anatomy and examining the carcasses of dead animals he finds in the woods. His interest in this morbid obsession engulfs Jeffrey to the point where he locks himself up in his make-shift laboratory for hours on end. This seclusion and isolation leads his father into an angry fit of rage in which he destroys Jeffrey’s lab and tells him to get some friends and a normal hobby.
Jeffery does, in fact, end up making friends with much ease, but not in the conventional way. He purposefully acts like a fool to get attention. He yells gibberish and flails his arms uncontrollably at inappropriate times and in inappropriate places such as the library. His uncontrollable and destructive behavior gets him into trouble. However, it also gets him the title of class clown as well as a bunch of friends who find his antics rather amusing.
Being a huge fan of gore and guts in films, and having previous knowledge of Jeffrey Dahmer’s gruesome crimes, I was looking forward to seeing some of this on screen. I, of course did not. This, however was my own fault. I spent zero time reading about the film beforehand. I was impatiently waiting for something that would never come. This was a bit of a downer for me as my expectations were shattered. I admit that this was my own bias and I should have researched the movie before investing into a non-existing expectation.
With this being said, the film was extremely well done. The acting, especially that of the young Dahmer, was exceptional and exactly how I would picture him as an adolescent. The cinematography was aesthetically pleasing and there was an overall atmosphere of suspense. As I said, if you go into this film expecting something along the lines of a slasher flick, you’ll be disappointed. However, if you go into it with the intent of watching an eerie, biographical recreation of the upbringing of a serial killer, then I am positive that you will enjoy it.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives My Friend Dahmer (2017) three graves out of five graves.
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