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Eye of the Killer

1 rating: -1.0
A movie directed by Paul Marcus

Detective Mickey Hayden (Sutherland) is called from his ten-year drunken stupor to reopen the case that is entirely to blame for his present wretched state. He must attempt to locate an enigmatic serial killer that has returned from solitude to kill … see full wiki

Cast: Gary Hudson
Director: Paul Marcus
Release Date: 1999
MPAA Rating: R
1 review about Eye of the Killer

Eye of the Killer – 1999

  • Apr 22, 2002
Pros: N/A

Cons: N/A

The Bottom Line: Not enough bang for the buck

aka After Alice

This predictable and blasé psycho drama centers around a serial killer known as ‘Jabberwocky’, an alcoholic psychic detective Mickey Hayden (Kiefer Sutherland), two psychics Prof. Harve Hatter (Henry Czerny) and Dr. Vera Swann (Polly Walker), a transvestite hooker Claudette (Alexander Chapman), a sleazoid magazine editor Margaret Ellison (Eve Crawford) and a fitting ending to the movie.

Mickey Hayden has been stuck on night shift for years after his dismal failure to capture the Jabberwocky during his reign of terror. At his side is his loyal companion, Jack Daniels or maybe Johnny Walker, or actually anything that goes down smooth and easy and numbs his mind. Seems along the way he also loses his wife, who is now dating his captain, as well as his self esteem.

Then the Jabberwocky returns and the captain, just for the Hell of it, puts Hayden back on the case mainly because he has ‘the touch’, or the ability to see things when he touches something related to a case. Not all the time, and not necessarily when he wants it, but it is there, just the same. Captain John (Gary Hudson) doesn’t actually believe in such things, but he thinks is a bit of a coup de grâce putting Hayden on the case that drove him to the bottle in the first place.

Fifteen minutes into this gig and I have already figured out who the killer is although they try to lure you into other directions. Maybe I’ve just watched too many of these things or maybe I’m a closet serial killer, anyway, it was a no brainer for me.

So, Hayden hooks up with this para-psychologist, Dr. Swann, and her good buddy Prof. Harve and they go on the trail of the ghost of Alice, who was the Jabberwocky’s first victim, 10-15 years prior. Alice makes a point to show herself to Hayden many times, trying to give him clues.

The Jabberwocky skulks around town, knocking off hapless victims for no rhyme or reason, leaving nothing behind but a playing card, portraying some elusive game of chasing the queen like the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. Of course, if you pay close attention, these clues give it all away from the beginning. His biggest mistake was killing off the hooker Claudette, who was, in a weird way, a friend of Hayden’s, and then killing the psychic Prof. Harve, who knows Hayden will be on the trail and leaves the perfect clue for him.

Behind it all, we have the ragtag magazine editor, Margaret Ellison, who lost her own brother to the wily hands of Jabberwocky 10 years before. With each killing, he leaves behind the playing card, but takes something personal from the victim. He then mails this to the magazine, taunting Ellison, and earning himself the headlines he so desperately wants. Or so we believe.

As far as suspense goes, there were a few ‘jumpy’ scenes in the movie but these come mainly from Sutherland when he gets a vision. He literally is attacked by the vision and reacts violently. After the 3rd or 4th time he does this, even this becomes mundane. The psychology or parapsychology issue really doesn’t come into play like you have seen in other serial killer movies like Silence of the Lambs, it is more a cute little side line rather than the main issue. With the exception of the little dropper that Prof. Havre tosses Hayden as he is killed, the balance is smoke and mirrors.

Acting skills and camera work were pretty weak. The story could have been developed so much better and held a bit more edge if they hadn’t tried to work too many different angles into play. An alcoholic psychic policeman is enough to deal with without throwing in the other gags as well. Although the little deal between the two detectives getting caught with their pants down was a funny twist for Hayden. Apparently all psychic flashes aren’t morose – smile.

The ending has a nice quirk to it, and although I am usually taken with quirky endings, this one didn’t make the story any better. Not that I didn’t think it was a fitting ending, but it left me with one question – just who the Hell was the Jabberwocky?

Directed by Paul Marcus, written by Jeff Miller. Nothing outstanding here kids. Kiefer gives a much better psycho-drama performance in 1993’s The Vanishing.


This is a new movie, everyone is a Bacon #2, even the obscure actors.


Special Effects: Well at least you can't see the strings

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