Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer
Release: September 24, 1986
Release: September 24, 1986

HENRY PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER, loosely based on the case of Henry Lee Lucas, a confessed serial killer, is a terrifyingly intimate journey into the twisted life of a murderous psychotic. As the blank-eyed Henry (Michael Rooker) drifts from place to place, he selects victims at random, slaughters them, and captures the brutality on videotape. When he is joined by his deranged roommate, a loudmouthed ex-convict named Otis (Tom Towles), the almost unfathomably malevolent acts multiply. John McNaughton's film, in the tradition of such classic studies of homicidal personality as PEEPING TOM and TAXI DRIVER, goes further than both of these movies in its flat refusal to tell the killer's story on anything other than the killer's terms. McNaughton is able to present the world Henry aimlessly traverses as Henry sees it--almost unendurably bleak and meaningless--and in doing so he allows his film to go as deep into the nightmarish mind of a killer as anything ever committed to celluloid.

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