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Confessions of a Serial Killer (1985) HD online

Confessions of a Serial Killer (1985) HD online
Language: English
Category: Movie / Crime / Horror / Thriller
Original Title: Confessions of a Serial Killer
Director: Mark Blair
Writers: Mark Blair
Released: 1985
Duration: 1h 29min
Video type: Movie
After being arrested, a Texas man begins confessing to the brutal murder of over 200 women. He recounts his random selection of victims and his traveling companions, his friend and friend's sister. But the police can't be sure whether to believe him or not until he locates a body and shows them some polaroids. Based on the true story of Henry Lee Lucas.
Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert A. Burns Robert A. Burns - Daniel Ray Hawkins
Dennis Hill Dennis Hill - Moon Lewton
Berkley Garrett Berkley Garrett - Sheriff Will Gaines
Sidney Brammer Sidney Brammer - Molly Lewton
DeeDee Norton DeeDee Norton - Monica Krivics (as Dee Dee Norton)
Ollie Handley Ollie Handley - Doctor Earl Krivics
Demp Toney Demp Toney - Doris Simpson
Lainie Frasier Lainie Frasier - Stranded Motorist (as Lainie Ferrante)
Eleese Lester Eleese Lester - Karen Grimes
Colom L. Keating Colom L. Keating - Detective Barnes (as Colom Keating)
Dayna Blackwell Dayna Blackwell - Girl Hitchhiker
John Browning John Browning - Doctor Spivey
Carla Edson Carla Edson - Honkytonk Girl
Gene Grottke Gene Grottke - Deputy Sheriff
Brady Coleman Brady Coleman - Arresting Officer #1


Reviews: [24]

  • avatar

    Hirah

    This brilliant, unsettling film was glossed over in favor of the higher profile maelstrom of ratings controversy, "Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer." That's a shame, because, like John McNaughton's brilliant low budget film, Mark Blair's "Confessions" is extremely well made, has an emphasis on documentary-like distance over horror movie theatrics, and some wonderfully seedy and intense characterizations. Genre addicts disappointed by "Henry" will be pleased by this film which "delivers the goods" in spades. Veteran genre production designer ("Texas Chainsaw Massacre" and "Re-Animator") Robert A. Burns steps in front of the camera as "Confessions'" Henry Lee Lucas substitute, Daniel Ray Hawkins. Nondescript and passive, a captured Hawkins relates the murderous swath he cut across the rural South to skeptical cops in a series of flashbacks that include his abusive childhood, his routine of picking up female hitchhikers, home invasions, and quick stop holdups turned bloodbaths, all documented via his trusty Polaroid camera. Closer to the actual events than "Henry," "Confessions" gives us a substitute Ottis Toole in the form of "Ole Moon," Daniel's partner in slime, an overweight homosexual serial killer who brings along his equally deranged sister for the ride. Although the last act is a tad anticlimatic and the secondary characters' performances are sometimes uneven, but this is an excellent, shocking movie. Like "Henry," it was shot on 16mm by local filmmakers, sat on the shelf for many years, has many similarities in tone and style, and was snatched up to capitalize on the success of a certain Jonathan Demme film when serial killers were hot stuff. Concorde even whipped up ad art with a guy in a Hannibal Lector mask! Aided immeasurably by a creepy synth score by William Penn and solidly directed by Blair, don't watch this one alone.

    8/10
  • avatar

    Gann

    It is ashame a movie like this falls through the cracks and does not get the attention it fully deserves.

    This movie got caught up at the same time as "Henry, Portrait of a Serial Killer" and lost. What a mistake. As much as I like Henry, this movie outdoes it. Creepy, slimly, it has it all to make a great horror movie and really shows you how a serial killer would act without the over the top gore or scenes.

    A little bit of info-The lead actor was the set designer on 2 famous films in the horror genre. Both the original TCSM and Re-Animator.

    I then heard he got stricken with cancer and is no longer with us.

    Sucks, such a talented person.

    Please get this movie to DVD, as it deserves it!
  • avatar

    Daron

    This film takes the glamor out of serial killin'. The titular murder is a simple man, and his country-boy manner and affability caused me to like him in the scenes where he was not hacking at women and then copulating with their corpses. The happy-go-lucky sidekick character--an essential element of the Henry Lee Lucas story--is especially sleazy in this film, which is a nice touch, I think. The fact that he is named "Moon" only sweetens the pot. I am a fan of disturbing cinema, and this film definitely disturbs. I found "Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer" absolutely unwatchable, simply due to its lack of plot, characters, and satisfying gore. This movie, on the other hand, boasts down-home characters, good performances, vile acts of posthumous sodomy, and paints a gritty portrait of what it is like to house an insatiable bloodlust. The other obvious advantage over "Henry" is that the more acclaimed picture lacked the proper plot structure necessary for such a film. This movie, on the other hand, with its flashback setup, is a tasty treat from start to finish. I give it three stars out of five.
  • avatar

    Mr.Champions

    Confessions of a Serial Killer tells the tale of Daniel Ray Hawkins (Robert A. Burns), he has just been arrested in Texas & is being held prisoner. Sheriff Will Gaines (Berkley Garrett) questions him, the cold blooded Hawkins has no problems in recounting & describing his horrific crimes in which he claims to have murdered over 200 people...

    Written & directed by Mark Blair I thought Confessions of a Serial Killer was an excellent piece of film-making, the script is great, the character's are superb & the dialogue is assured. It's chilling, it's unsettling & it's pretty damn frightening that a person such as Hawkins could exist. I think the character of Hawkins is based on Henry Lee Lucas who confessed to over 500 murders across America but was only convicted of 10. Anyway this is a basic film at heart with Hawkins simply recalling various incidents from his past from the very first murder he committed to when he was a child he would see his Mother (Jane K. Smith) bring men home & have sex with them in front of him, a practice which made his Father (Bill Boyd) commit suicide. Confessions of a Serial Killer is pretty shocking stuff throughout as Hawkins callously murders his victims without remorse or feeling, almost as if it's a normal thing to do. This is a million miles from my own mentality & I simply can't relate to this guy which makes what he did even more frightening. A deeply unsettling film that had a genuine power & nastiness. Why aren't more challenging films such as this made? The only negative thing I have to say about Confessions of a Serial Killer is that the final 20 or so minutes felt like a condensed slasher film such as Friday the 13th (1980) although I loved the sombre down beat & abrupt ending, I though it worked perfectly as it doesn't really give closure & there's no happy Hollywood ending to make the audience feel good about themselves. It's a pretty rough ride all the way but one well worth taking.

    Director Blair gives the whole film a bleak, minimalist look & feel which adds to the uneasy feeling that the guy standing next to you in a que could be a Daniel Ray Hawkins. There are some nasty scenes that mix sex & violence, a prostitute's head is bashed in & her bra ripped off, a woman is raped at the same time as having her throat slowly slit, there are more cut throats, broken necks & murders.

    Technically Confessions of a Serial Killer is as good as it needs to be, this is raw uncompromising stuff that doesn't need the latest CGI computer effects or high paid actors to get it's message across. The acting is strong by all involved especially Burns as Hawkins who gives a cold performance, the guy remains cool & calm throughout, he doesn't even flinch as he recalls the details of many of his brutal crimes & he has a chilling detachment from what he has done. Burns was actually the art director on classic horror films such as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) also production designer, The Hills Have Eyes (1977), The Howling (1980) & Re-Animator (1985) among other's, sadly he committed suicide after being diagnosed with cancer in 2004.

    Confession of a Serial Killer is a great film for those with the stomach, it's as simple & straight forward as that. A fantastic performance from Burns & an absorbing script detailing brutal crimes that on occasion sent shivers down my spine. What are you waiting for? Find a copy now, sit back & enjoy (if enjoy is the right word)...
  • avatar

    Flocton

    This movie isn't kidding. That's why so many comments are hostile to the extreme. The late Robert A. Burns plays the serial killer who's confessing, and he's unforgettable. It's one of those performances that really get you because there's no pretense in his acting. Burns plays a guy who, on the surface, seems pretty ineffectual: polite, soft spoken, and when dealing with the police, always upbeat and gentle. But when the seasoned sheriff starts to interrogate our friend, this soft spoken fellow never breaks a sweat nor raises the tone or timber of his voice as he tells of one murder after another after another. I know of no other actor who has so vividly created this kind of sociopath on the screen before. Burns never plays it up. Rather, the contradictions he seamlessly illustrates in this character continually draw us into his horrible world. That's why all these folks have written negative, hostile comments. Burns gets to you in a way that's profoundly unsettling. You can't take you eyes off him. The film itself takes the approach that the world exists to provide killers like this with toys to play with. It relentlessly positions the viewer in the center of the sociopath's experience, creating a world that defies civilized restraint, tenderness of any kind, and replaces all with a cold and casual cruelty. This is a film that reeks of endgame; God is dead and the beasts rely on instinct and the smell of blood to survive. Not a pleasant film, for sure, but in it's own right a kind of classic because it fulfills its goals without generalizing or in anyway trumping up its dark, relentless vision into something like Jason and Freddy, a faceless cartoon. This movie haunts one because the terror it illustrates comes from a very real and very recognizable human being. Terror is a man. Burns is extraordinary, and so is the film.

  • avatar

    Kinashand

    This actually predates 'Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer', but depicts a similar realistic, documentary-like approach as it chronicles the life of a serial killer named Daniel Ray Hawkins, who's misadventures mirror that of the infamous murderer, Henry Lee Lucas, whose killing spree stuck to the American highways allowing him to evade law enforcement for years before his eventual capture. Art director/production designer, Robert A. Burns gives it the old college try at acting as the lead sicko, and is sometimes quite creepy and convincing. His story is told in a series of interviews by a local southern sheriff, and Daniel expresses no remorse or regret in explaining the grim details of his crimes. This lacks the cinematic impact of 'Henry', but explores the motives and the sexual aspect with much more clarity and depth, especially those dealing with an unfortunate and traumatic childhood. This is directed with a sense of realistic and pungent honesty, and not a glamorized Hollywood slasher feel, making it a significant piece of film-making. Production value and performances are somewhat under par at times, but true crime genre buffs will find this fascinating as well as deeply disturbing. The faint of heart will find it sick and unnerving......Sorry fans, unrated VHS version recommended only. The DVD release has its most explicit content removed.
  • avatar

    Mardin

    This movie is one of the most realistic and scariest movies that I have ever seen. It is about the real life killer named Henry Lee Lucas and his sidekick Otis Toole. When I watched this movie I felt as if I were there because the acting was good and the way that the movie was made it looked very much real. The scenes in this movie were disturbing because these things could actually happen in real life done in these sick ways. It was chilling and being a reader of such serial killers such as this man here made it all the more horrific. I give it an 8.
  • avatar

    Phobism

    This is a very strong entry in the serial killer genre. Robert A. Burns portrayal of Daniel Ray Hawkins (a very thinly veiled character based on the notorious serial killer, Henry Lee Lucas), is disturbingly low-key and realistic. The film itself has a gritty, dirty feel that also adds to the realism. The acts of violence are suitably brutal but lack any real gore, which really doesn't deter from the film at all. CONFESSIONS plays out more like a case study than a "horror" film. Those seeking blood and guts may want to look elsewhere, but if you are looking for a good psychological scare, this may be the one for you. Definitely not for the casual horror goer, this film may be disturbing to those who enjoy mainstream horror fare. Every bit as good as the more popular HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER (also a great film). Highly recommended 8/10
  • avatar

    Priotian

    This is a perfect little movie in its way, succeeding as a voyeuristic experience from start to finish with just the right balance of banality, surprise, horror, disgust and curiosity-arousal & satisfaction. Like watching the seamier part of life through a perpetual keyhole. The art is in the actors & director never giving the appearance of "artfulness". Bravo!!!
  • avatar

    Valawye

    This is easily one of the best movies that I have ever seen. It is, in my opinion, the most terrifying look into the mind of a remorseless killer. Everyone attached to this movie should receive special thanks from the industry. To be able to delve so far over the edge and be able to remain sane they are truly great. Their greatness has brought us an insightful yet scary portal through which we are aloud into a world that we can only hope never touches us personally. I would recommend this movie for anyone who has a strong constitution and the need to see what makes a person snap and loose all control of the sense of right and wrong. This movie will give you nightmares that even if these type of people don't exist there was someone out there with the imagination to create such terror.
  • avatar

    Efmprof

    I personally found this film quite good. If you are after a brutal killing film this is not for you. It does not contain blood thirsty gore but if your into your psychology its goes some way to try and explain behind the killers motives. where the horror element springs from, to me is the way that the killer has no remorse or no view of morals and ethics normally undertaken by any civilised human beings. It portrays the killer as having no remorse for anything that he has done, somewhat justifying it for the torture he endured from his mother. I find interesting his calm relaxed manner in which he divulges his information to the police. This film based upon Henry Lee Lucas killings or so called killings in America seem some what toned down from his actual accounts and could of been a lot more graphic and brutal. I think though considering the time it was made it would not have been allowed to be sold/ viewed if it closer to Lucas's evidence....... In all a worth while movie if you have time on your hands and bored of Hollywood blockbusters with millions of pounds spent on special effects and nothing spent on content and dialogue.
  • avatar

    Nahelm

    I suppose it's near impossible to not compare this to 'Henry: portrait of a serial killer'. The biggest difference is that this one comes closer to being a biopic of sorts (even if Henry Lee Lucas is named Daniel Ray Hawkins here, and other such details), and also, Robert A. Burns shows more resemblance to the hick Lucas. Both films have a soundtrack leaning heavily on the synthesizer, though. 'Henry: portrait...' is of course way more intense and brutal, but that certainly doesn't mean 'Confessions...' doesn't have its moments. And overall, it stays closer to the reality of the Lucas case, although I'm not sure a poster of Wham! in one particular bedroom would be correct...?

    Burns' performance is pretty good, and presents us with quite a different 'Lucas' than Michael Rooker did; more like a hick, a simple dullard, of whom you actually wouldn't expect this kind of murderous behaviour. The rest of the cast ranges from good to adequate to pretty bad.

    A good 7 out of 10.
  • avatar

    Mr_Jeйson

    The best but now censored.

    This movie was originally X rated in '85. The re-releases have the sex and murder scenes cut out entirely.

    There are children and an underage wife in this. I.e it might have gotten caught up in the late '90s internet child porn scare dragnet on a technicality (eg 'children and sex in same movie').

    So for those saying 'no gore' there it is, or was.

    It has become just a psychological thriller now, after the omission of the sex and murder. But the original had even more impact contributing to this movies' 'stick with you' realism. Specifically Henry's mother's threesome (acting-humping ?!) right in front of little children crying and rape and necrophilia by Henry (eg the homeowner woman having her air-conditioner repaired). Chilling.

    Like chainsaw but far, far more plausible.
  • avatar

    Uanabimo

    I found out about this film through this site and I enthusiastically downloaded it based on the reviews I read.This film is very poor.The main difference between this and Henry Portrait of a Serial Killer is the fact there is a strong dynamic between the characters within Henry Portrait of a Serial Killer as well as very strong characterisation regardless of strong acting abilities. All of the characters within this film are flat, dull and at the most two dimensional,the dialogue is rubbish and where as within Henry you are prone to empathising with his situation and charismatic personality at the time as despising the sleazy antics of Otis and observing how Henry despises him also.This film leaves you feeling very uninterested and apathetic.There is no tension,there is no build up at all.This film is a dry prolonged yawn.Avoid.I have never wrote a review or responded on a forum ever.Watching this film drove me to it,I think that says a lot in itself.
  • avatar

    Endieyab

    Mark Blair's 'Confessions of a Serial Killer' is a rather good film but – whether you like it or not – you automatically compare it to John McNaughton's 'Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer' and then it definitely loses the battle. Reviewing this movie actually states all the more how powerful and unequaled McNaughton's effort really is. 'Confessions...' is very grim, but 'Henry' is at least a dozen times more grim! Rober A. Burns is truly eerie in his role, but Michael Rooker is at least a dozen times eerier in his! 'Confessions...' is disturbing, but... You get the picture! Based on the testimonies of the real Henry Lee Lucas, Burns plays a forty-something Texan hillbilly who quietly and without showing any form of emotions unravels his life as a serial killer to a patient copper. How he picked up multiple hitch-hikers and later dumped their cadavers in peaceful meadows. How he managed to stay out of the police's reach by being on the road all the time, etc... There's very few explicit material featuring in this film and that rather disappointed me. Not that I'm a sick puppy but a documentary about a serial killer is much more realistic when you're exposed to raw, shocking or even downright repulsive footage. Like it was the case in (sorry for bringing it up again) 'Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer". . The film is suspenseful, however, and the extended sequences of Daniel Ray chasing terrified victims though corn fields are truly unsettling The character drawings of Moon Lewton (Daniel Ray's homosexual accomplice) and his sister Molly are weak and the giant anti-climax is sorely disappointing. It's pretty much like the title says: confessions! You sit and listen to a man clarifying his vile acts, but you never really get inside his twisted mind or guess for the motivations of his insane behavior. Worth seeing but certainly not a must.
  • avatar

    MarF

    I haven't seen Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer to be able to compare the two, but after seeing this movie I don't need to. I saw it late one night on Cinemax and figured it to be one of the usual $20 sexfest type that fill up that particular programming slot, but after five minutes I knew I was wrong, surprised, and hooked. The low budget treatment is *very* effective. Compared to how envelope pushing 8MM was supposed to be, this is shocking stuff. Gruesome and compelling.
  • avatar

    Anaragelv

    The film is about a serial killer and I think it's the best thriller ever made. Superstar Robert A.Burns got no Oscar for it but he is playing well. Now go to the videostore and rent it!
  • avatar

    Faell

    Please note: I wrote the following comment after watching the R2 UK DVD release, which I have since learnt is heavily edited, with the complete removal of graphic violence (including rape scenes), a heavily cropped nude shower scene, and even lowered volume whenever swearing occurs. Since I abhor such censorship, I refuse to give a rating until I have had a chance to see the whole thing as originally intended by the film-makers, and remind you that all remarks I have made apply only to the butchered UK version.

    Rule number one according to 'BA_Harrison's Indispensible Guide to Blind-Buying Horror Films': beware of DVDs bearing glowing quotes from IMDb users (unless you know for a fact that they were written by me): chances are the film isn't the masterpiece it purports to be.

    Confessions of a Serial Killer has two such enthusiastic quotes on its cover (plus a rather cheesy picture of a loony in a Hannibal Lector style mask that never actually appears in the film), and although it's definitely not the worst film I've ever seen (which would be a mighty achievement in itself), I wouldn't describe it as 'an excellent, shocking movie' or 'gruesome and compelling' either.

    Shooting on grainy 16mm film, first time (and only time) director Mark Blair effectively captures that grimy vibe synonymous with the nastier, grittier serial killer flicks; he also commands some credible performances from his cast of unknowns, and displays a certain amount of know-how behind the camera. However, despite these admirable qualities, Confessions of a Serial Killer fails to satisfy thanks to a somewhat leaden pacing, a tendency by Blair to be rather careless with his narrative (some silly moves are made by both victims and assailants), but most noticeably, a refusal to get really down and dirty when necessary.

    Presented as a series of flashbacks, the murderous activities of psycho Daniel Ray Hawkins (Robert A. Burns) and evil siblings Moon and Molly Lewton (Dennis Hill and Sidney Brammer) are frustratingly bland, never entering the truly shocking territory inhabited by similarly themed classics such as Henry Portrait of a Serial Killer and Maniac: the film shies away from depicting the actual murders, preferring instead to let the audience to use their imagination—which is fine some of the time, but not for every bloody (or rather, unbloody) scene.

    A shame, because with some in your face brutality, this could have been the exception that proves my IMDb rule.
  • avatar

    Iphonedivorced

    i watched this movie just some time ago and i believe its nothing but an attempt to cash into serial killer movies. i admit i was attracted of the title and i have not heard of this movie before, but now i am very sorry i had a chance to see it. i moaned and yawned my way painfully into the first thirty minutes of the film until i realized that my life could not get any worse than this. i really tried to understand and swallow the message (if there ever was one) that it tried to convey, but i really could not get myself to do so. this film should have a curse in it, like in 'the ring': anyone who will see it will die. and believe me, everyone would want to kill themselves after they have seen this garbage.
  • avatar

    DrayLOVE

    When HBO hit bottom several years ago, they played bad movies over and over again because it was all their budget could afford. They have since reformed, but at the time they showed this, um, manure so many times a day I actually removed HBO and Cinemax (they were sold as a package then) from my cable subscription.

    Everything about this movie, from the "acting", directing and script is the worst you will find outside Manos: the Hands of Fate. The movie is depressing in the extreme; take a repellent character, have him confess to a long list of random murders in "flashbacks" (relayed to stone-faced deputies wearing a little too much makeup), add in lots of helpless victims and sadism, and you have this movie. It almost appears to be a booster film for would-be serial killers; the characters, slack-jawed and stupid though they are, are presented as invincible, getting away with every sadistic killing they commit, with the editing showing the victims *just* missing the chance to escape or scream for help. It's hard to tell who is more sadistic, the characters, the editors, the film-makers, or the agitated viewers who wrote glowing reports over this trash. I thought it was the film-makers until I read these reviews. Scary. There is a 2000 year-old Greek adage which translate to "garbage feeds on garbage." I didn't understand it when younger, but it is starting to make sense to me now.

    This movie does not enlighten, it only dehumanizes and desensitizes.

    Avoid this movie unless you never go outside, have no normal friends, and enjoy the suffering of others. One star.
  • avatar

    Vaua

    "Confessions of a Serial Killer" by Mark Blair is not as widely known as infamous "Henry:Portrait of a Serial Killer" and it's easy to see why.The film is not as disturbing and grimly effective as John McNaughton's true crime horror classic.It's also very loosely based on Henry Lee Lucas and Ottis Toole serial killing spree.Robert A. Burns(who worked on the original TCM)turns in a perfectly convincing performance as a serial killer.Some stalking scenes are mildly intense,unfortunately the ending is too abrupt and the lack of strong violence is hard to forgive.So if you want to see truly disturbing serial killer movie be sure to check out Austrian "Angst"(1983),which makes this one look like kindergarten stuff.7 out of 10.
  • avatar

    Hatе&love

    Confessions of a Serial Killer (1985) was an attempt to make a film about America's most notorious serial killer Henry Lee Lucas. This movie comes close to portraying the real magilla but it just turns into another slasher movie instead. Confessions lacks what Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) had such as a good writer, better acting and a competent director. The film makers of this mess decided to throw whatever they could at the wall and see what would stick.

    It's sad because it had all of the right elements to make a decent serial killer film. They had the mood and the sets right but poor execution and lame acting and pedestrian film making doomed this movie from the start. Some day somebody will make a straight forward bio-picture about the real Henry Lee Lucas. Until then stick with the better film of the two.

    Not recommended, unless you want a few laughs at some bad acting and inept film making.

    When the film was finally release on video during the early 90's, the distributors tried to capitalize on the success of Silence of the Lambs by having the title character appear on the cover a la Hannibal Lectur (mask and all).
  • avatar

    Ferri - My name

    I've just finished watching this dribble! It must be the WORST film I have ever seen, the quality was non-existant the audio on the region 2 disc had the swear words blanked out. If your think of buying or renting this.....DONT get Ted Bundy its far better.
  • avatar

    Umor

    Someone, apparently strung out on crack, said this film was realistic - it's anything but. Then again, who'd expect realism in a horror film?

    Despite this, it's a fine film for what it is. Decent acting, competent direction, and an interesting atmosphere devoid of the overdone tension of Hollywood-style filmmaking, combine to create a low-budget horror masterpiece. People rave and rant about that cheeseball of a film EvilDead, yet truly interesting topics about the dark side of humanity are ignored. What a smart world we live in...

    With all that said, it was no match for Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. And that's why, kids, Confessions of a Serial Killer will be the only film Mr. Blair gets to make. Should he try again? Lets hope so. Good luck.