Ted Bundy and Gary Ridgway are names nobody will ever forget and are also two of the most prolific serial killers in American history. Ted Bundy’s victim count was officially counted at 30 and Ridgway’s victims numbered almost 50, although it is thought that both men had much higher counts. Ridgway claims he murdered upwards of 71 women. This in mind, Writer and Producer Andrew Jones (Robert 2015, Cabin 28 2017) brings audiences Bundy and the Green River Killer, which is set for release on DVD and VOD Tuesday, May 7th through 4DigitalMedia. Giving viewers a chilling insight into the investigation that spanned nearly 2 decades, does it fare well against 1991’s Silence of the Lambs, which was also inspired by the gruesome, true events that happened in Washington State?
In 1982, in Green River, Washington, a woman was found murdered in the river. Ligature marks were found around her neck; the obvious cause of death. This is just after the state was previously haunted by the notorious Ted Bundy, who was waiting on death row in Florida for his crimes. Soon after the first body was discovered, more bodies of women (mainly prostitutes and runaways) were found dead in Green River.
Only the beginning of the nightmare for Washington State Police, in Bundy and the Green River Killer, we are introduced to Detective David Richards (Mark Homer: Storyline mini-series, Alcatraz 2018). A husband and father, he goes home at night, haunted by these murders. With no further leads coming through, Detective Richards enlists the help of FBI profiler, Bob Keller (Phillip Roy: Doctor Who series, Apostle 2018), the individual who helped to bring Ted Bundy to justice. Bob works to create a profile for the Green River Killer, but to no avail, The Green River Killer is still killing, and more bodies keep piling up. Interestingly, after one meeting between Bob and Detective Richards, Bob receives a letter from Ted Bundy who shows an interest in helping find out who the Green River Killer is.
Thereafter, Detective Richards comes face to face with the infamous Theodore Bundy (Richard Mark: Silent Eye 2018) and during the interview, Bundy gives disturbing insight into the Green River Killer. By meeting with Bundy, Richards is able to confront his own personal demons and face evil head on. An unlikely informant, Bundy does provide helpful details which ends up with the police coming face to face with Gary Ridgway (Jared Nelson: Alcatraz 2018); a killer who was able to elude police for almost 2 decades.
The real question is, why did it take this long to hunt the killer down? Well, unfortunately in the 1980s, DNA was in its’ infancy, and since they had nothing concrete against Ridgway, they had to let him go. In the film, it is outlined that Detective Richards knew in his gut that Gary Ridgway was the murderer. It also shows that some years down the road, the Green River Killer task force was disbanded, but Richards never gave up. Detective Richards was promoted and, in 2001, he re-opened the case and created a new task force. With DNA now solid, and with all the advances in forensics, the lab was able to match the DNA back to Ridgway, thus leading to his capturing.
Overall, considering the content involved, Bundy and the Green River Killer is a serious Crime Drama that does a decent job of portraying one of the most infamous murder cases in the country. Among the cast, Richard Mark offers a chilling performance of Ted Bundy, capturing the essence of Bundy quite well. Furthermore, Jared Nelson also gives an eerie performance as Gary Ridgway. A creepy film to watch, given the history of both cases, the feeling is very atmospheric, feed into the feeling of dread. Worthy to check out for anyone interested in true crime, Cryptic Rock gives Bundy and the Green River Killer 3 out of 5 stars.