New Ted Bundy movie: good or bad?


Actor Zac Efron playing serial killer Ted Bundy in new movie, Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile. Fair use Rolling Stone

Is the new Ted Bundy movie romanticizing a sadistic serial killer? A lot of people on Twitter and social media have been saying so, but I don’t agree.

Recently, the trailer for the biopic Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile ,based on infamous serial killer Ted Bundy’s life, dropped, and some members of the Twitter community — and other social media platforms alike — were not excited about it. These users found it weird that the trailer centered on Bundy’s charisma, rather than focusing on the fact that he was a stone-cold psychopath who brutally murdered women. Others were disgusted by the fact that it seems like the movie is trying to make Bundy seem like a handsome family guy, like the producers are trying to romanticize Bundy.

In my opinion, the trailer is not doing that. It seems like people are forgetting that the main reason Bundy got to capture all of these women was because of his charisma, because he was handsome, and because he had a way with words. One quick Google or YouTube search can show you footage of women saying they didn’t believe such a charming man like Ted Bundy could do something so vile.

The movie’s goal, at least from the trailer’s point of view, is not romanticizing Bundy; rather, it’s telling the true story of how women saw Bundy based on his charisma and handsomeness alone. And the fact that people are saying the movie will/is portray Bundy as this charismatic man just proves Bundy’s method worked: people can be fooled by good looks and a certain way with words.

Now, other critics of the trailer are saying how wrong it is that the family members/friends of these women have to see the man who killed their family member get memorialized and romanticized on the big screen. I can agree that it would be upsetting for me to see my family member’s killer on television or at the movies, but the conflict here is that there are many other killers who are memorialized throughout history; and examples include Jack the Ripper, the Zodiac Killer, the Son of Sam, and many others who have movies surrounding the stories of their lives as serial killers and the cops/detectives who worked their cases.

At the end of the day, it would be hypocritical to say that having a Ted Bundy movie is inappropriate and disgusting, but watching another movie about the Zodiac Killer is okay. People need to stop being so sensitive about certain things and do a little research, so they actually know what they’re talking about when it comes to certain situations — especially this one.