Zac Efron As Ted Bundy: What Went Wrong? – Wisecrack Edition

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  • Published: 29 June 2019
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    It's been 42 years since serial killer Ted Bundy was convicted and sentenced to death. Thanks to a Netflix documentary series and movie starring teen heartthrob Zac Efron, he's HOT again. And if you find that sentence as bizarre as we do - then, this video is for you. In this Wisecrack Edition, we dive in to the philosophy of aesthetics to figure out why the Zac Efron movie make us feel so... awkward.

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    Written by: Leo Cookman
    Directed by: Michael Luxemburg
    Hosted by: Jared Bauer
    Edited by: Mark Potts
    Motion Graphics by: Drew Levin
    Produced by: Emily Dunbar


    © 2019 Wisecrack, Inc.

Comments • 1 911

  • Veronica T
    Veronica T  1 days back

    I enjoy your critiques, but I cannot agree with you on this movie. The movie was made that way on purpose. It wanted us to believe Ted Bundy. It wanted us to doubt that he was trully a monster, though all evidence pointed to--yes, he was. We don't always see the wicked in people and we won't always believe it. It was meant to be told from the perspective of his girl friend, rather than from his perspective.

    • Butter Scotchnut
      Butter Scotchnut  3 days back

      I think the movie was trying to make a point about how people who look and seem “good” can be evil too. I think they ended up not quite hitting that point and leaned too much towards romanticizing him, which again I think could’ve made an excellent point but didn’t quite get there in the end. It ended up being a bit awkward and uncomfortable to watch rather than a mind opening thinkpiece I think it was trying to be.

      • Nathan Dorow
        Nathan Dorow  3 days back

        disappointed to see that wisecrack would make a whole video just to try and make fun of zac efron and discredit his acting chops

        • Nathan Dorow
          Nathan Dorow  3 days back

          i think wisecrack judged this movie soley based on Efron's reputation and casting. Which I dont think is fair to efron or the movie

          • Monarch
            Monarch  4 days back

            The director wanted to show how charming Bundy was and how he had people close to him guessing. Personally I liked that they kept out the murders for the most part rather than showing murders of his real victims and potentially glorify it. Plenty of times when this happens the families come don’t like their loved ones graphic deaths being lingered on and them being reduced to their murder. So keeping away from that felt more respectful to the victims rather than watching numerous actresses beg for mercy as they’re murdered. Plus for part of the film it’s supposed to be from Liz - his long term girlfriend - perspective so we’re supposed to be confused.

            • OtterDC Captain
              OtterDC Captain  4 days back

              At the 3:52 mark you show what book the movie is based on, The Phantom Prince: My Life With Ted Bundy, authored by Elizabeth Kendall (Ted Bundy's girlfriend). The book details their life together, not the murders. The part of Ted Bundy being charming and intelligent is what made the trial and story so compelling. However, I think it is possible to do Ted Bundy some cinematic justice by doing a movie that shows the crime and the charming side of his personality. It would have to have the character of Ted Bundy telling the story or utilize the newly released confession tapes as the narrator.

              • hoibsh
                hoibsh  4 days back

                They say the Ted fans are constantly at war with the Manson fans. LOL!

                • John Not Real Name
                  John Not Real Name  4 days back

                  By the way human law is not perfect. That being said Ted Bundy's innocence is not affirmed. The purpose of human law is to enforce the Divine or Natural Law which is what human's are inclined to (please no equivocation).

                  • Beautiful Disgrace
                    Beautiful Disgrace  5 days back

                    You got roasted in the comments bro. It's a movie not a documentary. What do u want? A disclaimer at the beginning? This review makes me want to see the movie because their approach is unique and looks well executed. I don't know how you missed what we all saw so obviously; maybe too much soy.

                    • Suprisesizefrieswithsideofsuicide

                      FUCK TED BUNDY NIGGA THATS WHY

                      • Heather Anne Korte
                        Heather Anne Korte  6 days back

                        Since it was based on the book his girlfriend wrote and she actually showed them pictures of the places I think it’s mainly to show how little people around him knew about him even while all of it was going on.

                        That’s why you get some of Bundy because she knew he was seeing a lawyer and she knew he got pulled over etc etc it’s only things she knew about and she didn’t know about the murders!

                        • Neftalí Navarro
                          Neftalí Navarro  6 days back

                          Whoopsies, looks like you got it wrong on this one.

                          • Blue Blondie
                            Blue Blondie  6 days back

                            I feel like the movie was trying to show the outsiders point of view, but did it terribly. They obviously used Efron as a sex symbol, which COULD have worked if they kept in it the perspective of someone else, bit flipping between Bundy's perspective and others'. Unfortunately, it's hard to make a movie about a serial killer from a potential victims pov, but they still could have used Efron to juxtapose Bundy's appeal to the outside world to his actual personality, however they kept out the atrocities Bundy committed.

                            • Adam Baldwin
                              Adam Baldwin  7 days back

                              I would have liked to see a bit more of Bundy's dark side in this, since we see so much of the movie from his perspective. I didn't care for how the first two murders were basically glossed over entirely, and we didn't even hear about them until he was already in a different state. I also didn't care for the pacing in general or how the story was laid out. Too many movies these days want to start from a midpoint or endpoint and while that works in a great movie like Fight Club, in other stories it just serves to cripple the narrative by starting at a conclusion and telling us to work backwards towards something we already know. In this case, all it does is serve to break up the narrative unnecessarily while reminding us we already know what happened.


                              That said, I thought Efron did a great job and I never thought of him as innocent. Quite the contrary, to me he seemed like a darkly disturbed individual hiding something truly disgusting, but so adept at appearing charming as to fool almost everyone around him. Again, I would have liked to see more of his dark side, especially seeing how he came to set up and then commit the first murder, which would have been the most interesting part of the movie. Opportunity missed there, for sure.


                              I disagree with the overall characterization of the movie, though. Problems aside, it seemed to do what it set out to do, which is portray a dramatization of Bundy's actions, the consequences of them on those around him, and the public reaction in general. In a way, it makes us feel like innocent bystanders who watched it all unfold as it actually happened, people who weren't privy to the most gruesome details until they came out in his highly publicized trial.

                              • 假作真時真亦假
                                假作真時真亦假  1 weeks back

                                Zac Efron is definitely handsome.
                                Ted Bundy is definitely not.
                                Like wtf, who thinks Ted is handsome????? He's fucking ugly.

                                • darryl regan
                                  darryl regan  2 weeks back

                                  Nothing went wrong

                                  • Funyarinpa
                                    Funyarinpa  2 weeks back

                                    To be perfectly honest I feel the exact opposite way when it comes to those 2 movies (Extremely Bla and the 2002 one). To be it is the 2002 version that is aesthetically repugnant while the new one at least gets a point across.
                                    The reason for that is fairly simple: I know who Ted Bundy was, as far as his relevance as a serial killer goes. I know how extremely callous and violent he was, how whimsical he was when it came to picking his victims and how a lot of psychologists assume that his violence towards women was fueled by a deep hatred for his mother and a wish to kill her, paired with a fear of her that never allowed him to act out against her.
                                    I do not need a movie going "gee whiz, that dude was pretty evil right? wanna know hoooooow evil? well here is a best-of of all his murders as entertainment media. Doesn't matter that we're basically using the death of real people for cheap entertainment, cause there is value to our movie. That value is that you can transcend from being someone that knows and is disgusted by his acts to someone that knows and is disgusted by his acts but can also say 'Did you hear how her skull cracked though? Holy shit, there was blood everywhere, lul.'".
                                    I absolutely don't mind violent movies. Hell I enjoy R rated action movies and some nonsensical shock and splatter flicks, but in those you are dealing with theoretical scenarios and fictional people.
                                    If I want to know more about a real killers methods I'd rather watch a documentary that has policemen describing their assumed version of events in a respectful manner or I just read up on it.


                                    What I never got out of these documentaries or wikipedia entries however is an understanding of why the hell so people glorified and lusted over him despite knowing what he did. Just like with the Boston Bombers it's the willful ignorance of the public that is far more interesting to me than a stylish reenactment of a serial killers deeds. And in a way this movie encapsulates that aspect perfectly. It does not show you how he, like psychopaths occasionally do, trained himself to portray the right emotions to manipulate and lure others in, it doesn't mention the issues with his mother, the stalking and so on because these were all claims at the time. Sure, we absolutely know or can at least assume these things happened but for the people that were inclined to believe him at the time they were simply accusations. So, seeing Ted Bundy from their perspective as just this handsome and charming guy that doesn't seem the slightest bit unstable, the movie implicitly asks you the question "Would you have been swayed? Would this have been enough for you to dismiss all his violent acts or learn towards questioning any evidence of them?". In my case it didn't have that effect, which might be because I don't exactly like Zac Efron but it still left me with the thought "What is it was a gorgeous young woman instead? What if she was charming, successful, competent and overall the kind of person a lot of people would like? How inclined would I feel to defend her then, even knowing that I could potentially be spitting the families of her victims in the face by doing it?".
                                    To me personally that aspect had the effect that I maybe didn't enjoy the movie but at least saw enough value in it to not consider it bad or distasteful. It can at least claim that whenever someone asks "Why the hell was the movie trying to fuck Zac Efron?" they will soon come across the answer "Because a big chunk of america wanted to fuck Ted Bundy at the time." and that might lead to self-reflection and the expanding of horizons. It will obviously also lead to yet another messed-up category of people: Namely people that now lust over Zac Efron and, by association, gain sympathy for Ted Bundy. But to be honest, just like video games are not truly at fault when someone that happened to play some shoots up a place it's not the movies that are at fault if the audience is incapable of disconnecting the actor from their role.

                                    • Ryan
                                      Ryan  2 weeks back

                                      Maybe you should be more respectful

                                      • Marcel Rows
                                        Marcel Rows  2 weeks back

                                        Man, that Ted Bundy movie at the end seems pretty good. Sounds like a better watch.

                                        • olutobii
                                          olutobii  2 weeks back

                                          I think they were trying to put the audience in Bundy’s shoes, i.e try show us how any one of us could end up in his situation. Peterson says a lot that you don’t know yourself until you truly understand your capacity for evil

                                          • Van Goth
                                            Van Goth  2 weeks back

                                            Terrible movie, overrated like most of the stuff you see on Netflix. But then again, i think most movies are terrible.

                                            • Turtle Loop
                                              Turtle Loop  2 weeks back

                                              H

                                              • Dave
                                                Dave  2 weeks back

                                                "What's that in the sky papa?"


                                                "That...That's the point son...over your fucking head it goes."

                                                • theanimal12
                                                  theanimal12  3 weeks back

                                                  extremely wicked didn't want to tell Teds story, but his wifes sory, someone looking from the inside out

                                                  • eczema
                                                    eczema  3 weeks back

                                                    Zac's depiction of Bundy was very off to me, and not in a good way.
                                                    Bundy was known to have a likable character, he was smart, witty and most importantly he *didn't come off as annoying* and I think that is why people were attracted to him (aside from his looks). I feel as though Zac only managed to get the "handsome" part down, he did not manage to capture Bundy's character whatsoever.

                                                    • 17golfstar
                                                      17golfstar  3 weeks back

                                                      this is the shittiest video ever. If you don't understand what the movie was trying to do....then don't embarrass yourself on youtube.

                                                      • Ryan McAllister
                                                        Ryan McAllister  3 weeks back

                                                        I interpreted the choice to not see his crimes as forcing us to view Bundy from his girlfriend’s point of view...which is why we don’t see his evil until he admits it to HER.

                                                        • Ngân Trần Thị Thảo

                                                          According to the Netflix documentary, Ted Bundy was first reported to the police by his girl friend, Elizabeth Kloepfer. She noticed his unusual behavious already and was not so convinced by his lies afterwards.

                                                          • Wiggle Wormee
                                                            Wiggle Wormee  3 weeks back

                                                            American Psycho was a shit movie. Just saying.

                                                            • chicken little
                                                              chicken little  3 weeks back

                                                              Even though I knew Ted was a murderer and I knew exactly what happened in the trials, somehow I was rooting for him. He just seems so genuine, and I even got a little upset when he got the death sentence. That was until he confessed through "hacksaw" and it was so... Disgusting. He's been so genuine and seemingly honest throughout the whole thing, seeing him admit to that was so gross. And I think that's definitely what they were going for. I think we were supposed to be put is Liz's position. We know he's capable of that, after all she's the one that called his name in, but he's still a very charismatic person. I think it's a very wonderful film.

                                                              • Generic Username
                                                                Generic Username  3 weeks back

                                                                Back in the good old days we hung a group of innocent women and pressed a man to death in Salem. Today Salem is a beautiful coastal town that has refined their history through aesthetics to something haunting yet pleasing. Efron playing Bundy is just another example of witch to kitsch. No sense bemoaning it, that just makes you a broken record.

                                                                • Amanning15007
                                                                  Amanning15007  3 weeks back

                                                                  I disagree... I think that's the whole point. We all know how horrible he was but the movie portrayed exactly what everyone thought at this time... Look at this handsome clean cut all American man, there's no way he did this. Yet he was an absolute monster underneath the cosmetics. I think they did a good job and seriously... Even though this seems insane this is what happened.

                                                                  • Jelyn Leyva
                                                                    Jelyn Leyva  3 weeks back

                                                                    The movie was meant to be from the perspective of Lily Collins character as it was adapted from a memoir written by the real life person (The Phantom Prince: My Life With Ted Bundy). In this way, I think your analysis is overseeing the entire argument of the film. The aesthetics are a crucial element to the argument especially as they pertain to a woman's point of view, namely Ted Bundy's partner. Your missing a key dynamic of this movie, and that is what it is to see a man like Ted Bundy from a woman's (sexually attracted to men--don't want to be exclusive here, just want to make the argument) point of view. Most arguable from Collins character, but the full movie plays on this. Since the movies main focus is on the relationship Ted has to women (his partner and her daughter, and his "wife") you have to engage it through this lens. How did women see this man? It's really quite a stroke of genius. It requires its audience to engage with it from a woman's psyche to really feel the anxiety. I'll tell you as a woman, I didn't need the violence to fear Zac Effron's, Ted Bundy. What was most chilling was how much I was drawn to empathize with him, and how even I questioned, 'perhaps we are all crazy, he couldn't have done it'. Many a Women know what it's like for a man to turn the tables. Gaslighting is an insidious form of manipulation. This was perhaps overlooked because we are all too often defaulted to look through masculine eyes. But this story, especially as adapted from a woman's perspective, I would argue strikes the right tone in such a time as this. Far too many women know too well the fear and anxiety of what it is to love a man fully, and yet be completely blind to his true nature. Because while Ted Bundy was "Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Vile and Evil" it only takes a few key strokes of "#metoo" to see that there are other terrors out there and that appearance and charisma are not always good indications of the person. As a woman, I can say of this movie "message received".

                                                                    • Juwan Tett
                                                                      Juwan Tett  3 weeks back

                                                                      You contradict yourself in this video

                                                                      • Ruben Reis
                                                                        Ruben Reis  3 weeks back

                                                                        So after just forcing myself to watch the 2002 ted bundy film, I think what Zac Efron's bundy film was attempting to do is see him how other people (his girlfriend and the public) would have viewed him, and the 2002 film, difficult as it may be to watch depicts the real bundy.
                                                                        Efron's one interests me way more as it is terrifying to think how charismatic these guys can be, but I believe both films are necessary, and if someone comes away thinking of bundy as a sex symbol, I believe that it says more about them than it does about the movies.

                                                                        • Lisa S. Terry
                                                                          Lisa S. Terry  3 weeks back

                                                                          I think this is a brilliant encapsulation of the most terrifying thing about Bundy which is his charming and handsome charisma. I so want to envision grotesque people when thinking about murderers, and to know that they can be just any John or Jane For is so hauntingly chilling

                                                                          • edgar2prado
                                                                            edgar2prado  3 weeks back

                                                                            WITHOUT HAVING WATCHED THE MOVIE: What I would like to know is whether Mr. Bundy is (correctly or incorrectly) portrayed to be such a good actor that he can really charm his victims without giving the slightest residual creepy vibe. Was the real Ted Bundy so successful because he was as charming and dazzilng as his Zac Efron portrayal? Or were there small signals that simply were consistently ignored perhaps because of the times he lived in, or how well he chose his victims? I just looked long hand hard (no pun intended) at both photos of Ted Bundy and Zac Efron as Ted Bundy. Sorry to say this, but Zac Efron was not a good choice for this movie. Just like Matt Bomer, Zac Efron has beautiful blue eyes that, though they have some life in them, are mostly expressionless. (This does not imply that they are bad people.) I've seen this in person too. You have to get your cues elsewhere. Zac Efron exudes charm. Ted Bundy may have fooled many, but there was something manic, forced, about both his eyes and his facial expression. Zac Efron as Ted Bundy is just a beautiful and charming guy who happens to be a serial killer. I suspect that both Mr. Efron and his director did a piss poor job of portraying Ted Bundy at all. This movie (like theTwilight saga) is almost certainly just another masturbatory fantasy, and very little else. NOW, LET THE TROLLING BEGIN.

                                                                            • IGuessIt’sOk YungRichBaby

                                                                              Zac Efron was not about to ruin his image. I think zac would have not taken the role if it was graphic

                                                                              • Aura The Lilligant Princess

                                                                                Theres a line between depictions of showing how his charisma manipulated others around him and straight up making a sex icon. Unfortunately as well made as this movie was it blurred the line between the two

                                                                                • Ian Easton
                                                                                  Ian Easton  4 weeks back

                                                                                  Youre looking too deep, theyre just trying to bank off the pop culture phenomenon that was the Ted Bundy trial, theyre trying to recreate the feelings that millions of people felt, and to do that you have to not know if he did it until he's convicted like the rest of america did all those years ago

                                                                                  • Cosmic Dancer
                                                                                    Cosmic Dancer  4 weeks back

                                                                                    i think ultimately the message was "not all that glitters is gold". dont judge a book by its cover, etc. charming attractive people aren't necessarily good people. so be more discerning.

                                                                                    • Brian C
                                                                                      Brian C  4 weeks back

                                                                                      The fact that you can only focus on an actor's perceived "hotness" says a lot more about you than the filmmakers. I talked to my mother and she confirmed that Bundy, before he was convicted, was considered very charming and good looking by 70s standards. I was a little kid during this time and I never really noticed him until he was executed and to me he looked like another old fart.

                                                                                      • Anthony Alexander
                                                                                        Anthony Alexander  4 weeks back

                                                                                        You are.. extremely incorrect, shockingly ignorant and dim.

                                                                                        • HuMan Being 34/7
                                                                                          HuMan Being 34/7  4 weeks back

                                                                                          Sounds like you have preferred a bit of Fakes News concerning Teds Outside appearances.

                                                                                          • HuMan Being 34/7
                                                                                            HuMan Being 34/7  4 weeks back

                                                                                            With Ted.....the Outside was beautiful, it was the inside that was So ugly.

                                                                                            • Hayo Niewenhuis
                                                                                              Hayo Niewenhuis  4 weeks back

                                                                                              The film succeeds in leaving you confused. It leaves the audience questioning if he was quilty, while saying he was, and even ends in kind words by the judge. I feel that's way more powerful, it questions your own instinct, just like ted bundy did in reality. The succes is confusion and disbelieve. Also, this video proofs the succes, it had started more discussion and analysis than previous films. It looked for the bounderies of esthetics and leaves you confused. We all know what Bundy did was awfull, but we never experience the disbelieve and his weird succes in defending himself.

                                                                                              • Bebe Enderson
                                                                                                Bebe Enderson  4 weeks back

                                                                                                Before I watch this I'd like to eat that Zac Efron did amazing job with the script he was given...the movie just felt like the makers wanted to put Bundy in a forgiving light (as if the audience should sympathize with him) without actually portraying how gruesome and evil he really was.

                                                                                                • Meghen Black
                                                                                                  Meghen Black  3 weeks back

                                                                                                  Yes and no it wasn't a forgiving light it was the light of how a lot of people saw him this way the entire movie you feel conflicted and disturbed because of how likable he is even though he is a monster idk he kinda missed the entire point of what this movie was trying to do

                                                                                              • Awaken Artist
                                                                                                Awaken Artist  4 weeks back

                                                                                                Hollywood and Nexflix are run by satanics so i know that confuse the sheeps with black magic is his goal and they succeded. Been a witch is cool. Is good to kill. They seduct. They want us to be Psycho too. Please analyze " The house that Jack built " that would be a good example of the pop culture luciferian generation we live