Title: My Friend Dahmer
MPAA Rating: R
Director: Marc Meyers
Starring: Anne Heche, Ross Lynch, Alex Wolff
Runtime: 1 hr 47 mins
What It Is: Based on a comic written and drawn by one of Jeffrey Dahmer’s real high school buddies Derf Backderf (Wolff) this shows the man who’d become known as The Milwaukee Cannibal (Lynch) as an awkward high school student. A boy who just wants acceptance from his peers and in particular from his parents. Parents whose marriage is falling apart. As that is all going on Jeffrey becomes obsessed with a fairly young doctor who runs near his home. But the signs of what was to come may have always been there, rearing their head gradually.
What We Think: I very much disliked this. Lynch, whose previous work I am unfamiliar with but I’m told he’s from the Disney Channel. Seeing his performance here after learning that was interesting. Here’s my main problem I don’t want to attempt to sympathize with Dahmer. I don’t and can’t see him from anything other than the monster he became. No amount of bullying can make me empathetic towards a man who murdered 17 people, that we know of. Performances were good even if it felt like Heche was in a completely different film sometimes.
Our Grade: C-, Hard pass for me on seeing this one ever again. Witnessing the attempts by Meyers and the writers to sympathize was disheartening. A really good performance from a young man I’d never seen before was perhaps the only true standout in an otherwise disappointing experience. This was one I was looking forward to, but the script went places I didn’t want it to go. It tried to tell a story I literally did not care about. For that, I cannot recommend this particular film. Go ahead and skip it.