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Henry - Portrait of a Serial Killer

Drama and Horror movie directed by John McNaughton

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A dark and twisted film about a very deranged and demented soul

  • Aug 12, 2009
  • by
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer was a film that is loosely based upon the exploits of notorious white trash serial killer Henry Lee Lucas. This man claimed to have killed hundreds of people, mostly women. But the director takes us down the path of a man who is in many ways similar to the real deal.

Michael Rooker stars as Henry, a demented man living in a twisted world who lives with a scummy roommate Otis (based also on Henry Lee Lucas' running buddy/lover Ottis Toole). Otis' kid sister Becky (loosely based upon the very young sister of Ottis) comes to live with her older brother after a falling out back home. She decides to head out to the big city to find a new life.

The film follows the murderous trail of Henry who's pent of rage and sexual frustrations fuel the madness that's locked deep within his psyche. Those that are around him soon feel his madness and it's brutal and fatal consequences. The director follows these three individuals with a pseudo-documentary feel. The rape and murder scenes are graphic and brutal as they should be. This is no mere exploitation film because there is nothing exploitative about it, as it should be.

I have to recommended this film. It's a sick, twisted but honest look at the life of a serial killer. He's no movie magic monster because unlike those, he's for real. Co-starring future B-Movie thug Tom Towles as Ottis.

You'll never see a film like this again.

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Quick Tip by . October 17, 2010
posted in Cult Cinema
I saw the film twice trying to determine what I was missing since I was the only one I knew that hated it. It is spastic, inconsistent, and the end comes out of nowhere. The only interesting thing about it was the movie poster. There was an interesting icon bottom left: stick figure hand strangling a stick figure cat with this moniker: "Not for Children."
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Joseph Ulibas ()
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I have been working on my web series Fine Feather Friends.
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About this movie


Loosely based upon the serial killer Henry Lee Lucas.

Produced in 1986 and it took several years to finally get a theatrical release.

Shot on 16mm with a budget of $110,000.

Ever seen a film so terrifying that it made you want to sleep with all the lights on? A film so unsettling that some of its scenes were stuck in your mind long after you'd finished viewing it? John McNaughton's horrific masterpiece HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER is that kind of film. Based on true events, this critically-acclaimed classic so believably portrays the senseless killing spree of a dangerous sociopath on the loose, Michael Rooker in a bone-chilling performance, that people can't stop talking about it even twenty years after it was filmed. If you've never seen HENRY before, get ready for the ride of your life. If you have seen HENRY and are one if its many fans, you're not going to want to miss this 20th Anniversary Special Edition, which is packed full of never-before-seen extras and is presented here in a stunning new high definition transfer supervised by the director.
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Director: John McNaughton
Genre: Horror, Drama
Release Date: January 5, 1990
MPAA Rating: Unrated
DVD Release Date: September 27, 2005
Runtime: 83 minutes
Studio: Greycat Films
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