3.5 out of 5 stars
If watching a picture-perfect thriller about a serial killer wreaking havoc in the San Francisco is your thing, then Zodiac is definitely the film for you. This thinking man’s thriller, though a little too long for my blood, was a decent portrayal of real events and was well worth the money I forked over to see it. For over a decade of time, from December 1968 to the late 1970’s, a serial killer who called himself The Zodiac terrorized the San Francisco Bay Area, dispatching his victims seemingly at random. Keeping up a cryptic, cat-and-mouse correspondence with several major newspapers in the area, the Zodiac seemed to be extremely smart in what he did. Despite a number of different leads, the real killer was never caught and the murders eventually stopped. The film can be divided into three main parts: the murderer, the investigation, and the end results. The film starts off discussing the actual killer, his thoughts and motives, and it even shows some pretty graphic murder scenes. Following those violent scenes, the movie goes into great detail the investigation that the police were doing in order to find the Zodiac. And then it discusses a character’s obsession with the case that he eventually writes a book about. This movie was flawless and very well drawn out. If you have watched forensic file shows on television, then you probably know a little bit about the Zodiac killer. This movie did a good job keeping you on the edge of your seat even though you probably knew what was going to happen. The editing in the film was top-notch. Not only that, but director David Ficher (Seven, Fight Club) shows that he is also an actor’s director. He did an excellent job of directing his cast into true life roles wonderfully. The three main actors in this film, Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo, and Robert Downey Jr. add some spice to this movie and played their roles beautifully. Jake Gyllenhaal, who plays the character Robert Graysmith who later became the author of the book of the same name, plays his character with pizzazz that makes this film extremely fun to watch. After playing a nerdy cartoonist for his local newspaper, Gyllenhaal transforms that character into an obsessed and wannabe detective wanting to know more about the serial killer. Mark Ruffalo plays a humorous and overworked cop with credibility. He really gets the job done and gets into a little bit of trouble along the way because he consistently works with Gyllenhaal’s character to try to find the Zodiac even though the case was almost dead with no more leads. Robert Downey Jr., brought most of the laughs of the movie because of his witty comments and smart remarks towards his co-workers. Despite having a small role in the film, Robert Downey Jr. played a very significant role in the plot. The acting really in this movie made it a major pro. Despite the fact of the talented acting and the good dynamics of the film, there was one major drawback of the film that might turn a lot of people off to it. The movie is nearly 3 hours long and at some points you are ready for it to end but it keeps on going. You pretty much get the entire idea of the movie at around the two-hour mark, but it keeps on going until it is done telling its story. Other than that, the film was great. So if you don’t mind sitting down for nearly three hours, then you’ll definitely enjoy Zodiac. Just go see the movie and judge for yourself. However, I strongly doubt that you will be disappointed at all. This movie will have you hanging on the edge of your seat from the beginning all the way to the end.