Critique de Nikayaya
The title My Friend Dahmer seems misleading. After watching the film the viewers may wonder if Jeffrey Dahmer (Ross Lynch) ever truly had friends. As the story of the serial killer is relatively fresh in comparison to alternatives like the Son of Sam (who fits the portrayal better) it seems confusing that the character seems to ignore previous history. Even if one was not of age in the 90’s when Dahmer’s grisly murder spree was discovered, a quick google search would seem to contradict the textbook serial killer portrayal of Jeff Dahmer.
The movie seeks to describe a time in Dahmer’s life when he was on the cusp of being a killer, prior to the severed body parts and discounted victims. The movie makes light of his treatment in high school by the writer and his group of friends, who adopt a vulnerable Dahmer only to leave him feeling used in the end. The movie itself seems torn between being a teen comedy and a look into the mind of one of the most disturbed killers of our times, without actually giving any insight. The back story of his mother’s (Anne Heche) mental illness, his parents seemingly strained relationship, give no more light to his murderous drive than the fits sporadically thrown into the film.
Visually the movie is flawless, demonstrating a 1970’s primarily anglo suburb to a T, but stunning views and a convincing cast including Alex Wolff as young Derf, and Dallas Roberts as Mr. Dahmer, doesn’t truly find a purpose. The story of Jeffrey Dahmer, a man who preyed on homosexual men, primarily young homosexual minority men knowing that they would be less inclined to be missed, seems too dark a period to be made into a teen comedy. One is left wondering whether the title is apropos, or if it was just beneficial for the sale of the story, as it seems no one was truly Jeffrey Dahmer’s friend, and with good reason.
My Friend Dahmer
Directed by Marc Meyers
Produced by Jody Girgenti, Marc Meyers, Adam Goldworm, Michael Merlob, Milan Chakraborty
Screenplay by Marc Meyers
Based on My Friend Dahmer by Derf,
Starring Ross Lynch, Alex Wolff, Dallas Roberts, Anne Heche
Music by Andrew Hollander
Cinematography Daniel Katz
Edited by Jamie Kirkpatrick
Production company : Ibid Filmworks , Aperture Entertainment
Distributed by FilmRise
Release date : November 3, 2017 (United States)
Previewed San Diego International Film Festival October 5 2017
- Note de Nikayaya: 3.5