The Killing of John Lennon
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The Killing of John Lennon
What sort of man kills one of the most beloved musicians in the world, and what prompts him to pull the trigger? Filmmaker Andrew Piddington explores these questions in this fact-based drama which examines several weeks in the life of Mark David Chapman, the man who murdered John Lennon. Chapman (played by Jonas Ball) is a self-obsessed young man who has an emotionally distant relationship with his parents and a failing marriage to Gloria (Mie Omori). Unable to hold down a job, Chapman spends a lot of time at the public library, where he rereads J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye and… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 37%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It's well-constructed and acted, but mainly just left me feeling like I needed a shower after an exercise in voyeurism surrounding an event that's still hard to watch."
‑ Mark Rahner, Seattle Times
"Even if you can forgive [director] Piddington's mangling of the basics, you will find it hard to overlook his frantic use of slo-mo, a wobbly camera, freeze frames, double exposures and a close-up of a single eye."
‑ Kyle Smith, New York Post
"A well-researched docudrama on the twisted mind of the 25-year-old Mark David Chapman, the nobody who killed John Lennon."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Though the psychic space Piddington and Ball create is certainly a terrifyingly claustrophobic place to be, it's also stultifying and banal in the way other people's crazed obsessions become after a very short while."
‑ Ken Fox, TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Unlike Chapman, The Killing of John Lennon is no phony."
‑ Eric Kohn, New York Press
"Gets inside Chapman's head but never under his skin."
‑ Sam Adams, Los Angeles Times
"The only revelations in The Killing of John Lennon are those we could have picked up ourselves, assuming we cared enough to do so."
‑ Gene Seymour, Newsday
"As the narrative lugubriously sticks to the documented events, we are served nothing more than a filmed transcript."
‑ Matthew Sorrento, Film Threat
"Only slightly better than Chapter 27, it's questionable whether even the most morbidly curious John Lennon fan might have any interest in sitting through nearly two hours of this creepy lunatic."
‑ Edward Douglas,
"Piddington never dares to diagnose Chapman's rage, settling for Wikipedia-style objectivity dressed in the more fatuous-than-provocative manner of Robinson Devor's Zoo."
‑ Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine
"Fastidiously researched, dubiously suspenseful character portrait is unable to salvage a lick of hindsight from the tragedy beyond "murderous narcissists are people too.""
‑ Aaron Hillis, L.A. Weekly
"Who is the audience here, besides depraved Beatles completists?"
‑ Aaron Hillis, Village Voice
"Despite its vivid and imaginative style, The Killing of John Lennon is tough slogging for its nearly two-hour running time."
‑ Eric Monder, Film Journal International
"[W]e have only the perspective of a madman here, and it is no more enlightening than the ramblings of any given violent schizophrenic or criminal psychotic."
‑ MaryAnn Johanson, Flick Filosopher
"A stunning performance by newcomer Jonas Ball in the role of Mark David Chapman, the killer of John Lennon."
‑ Harvey S. Karten, Compuserve
More reviews for The Killing of John Lennon on Rotten Tomatoes