Thanks to the usual hookup, the wife and I went out to see a sneak preview of Zodiac last night. If you are unfamiliar with the subject, the movie is about the famous Zodiac serial killer of the late 1960’s. Read more about him here.
As for the movie, its a David Fincher film, so given how much I have loved his other movies (Panic Room, Fight Club, The Game, Se7en… even Alien³), I had high expectations for this film. However, it is a telling of factual events with a little fiction thrown in to round out the edges, so I tried to go in with an open mind.
The movie is good. The direction and cinematography are great. The actors each play their roles extremely well, and they portray the frantic and frustration of the case to perfection. And that leads to the downside of this film… in truth, the Zodiac killed was never caught, never brought to justice, so if you are looking for satisfaction and closure, the story of the Zodiac is not where you want to look. This is a story about reporters and police officers desperately trying to figure out a series of crimes and to catch a killer who taunts them with letters where every pieces of evidence leads somewhere but proves nothing. At one point there is a scene of one of the characters frantically sifting through the half dozen or more boxes of files pertaining to just one of the killings illustrating the sheer volume of the mountain of interviews, clues, evidence and suspects.
It is a slow film, almost like watching a documentary with re-enactments, but it is interesting to see people’s lives come together and fall apart all around this case. It is not a great film, its not something I would watch a dozen times, but I enjoyed it, and certainly didn’t think it was a waste of my time. If the Zodiac interests you, go see it. If not… wait to rent it.