Review – Mindhunter
Directed by: David Fincher & Tobias Lindholm
Written by: Liz Hannah & Tobias Lindholm
Produced by: Liz Hannah & David Fincher
Release Date: October 13th 2017
Mindhunter is a Netflix series set in the late 70’s. It follows two FBI detectives as they embark to learn more about serial killers and why they do the things that they do. One of the detectives, Bill Tench, actually coins the phrase, ‘serial killer,’ at one point and the team do seem to be making progressive steps into understanding a disturbed psyche, even if some of the methods they use along the way are fairly questionable.
The series is produced by David Fincher, who also directs 4 episodes of the first season and 3 in the second season. If you are a fan of Fincher’s other work, then this will be right up your street. It shares a lot of similarities with Se7en, The Social Network, Gone Girl, Panic Room and definitely Zodiac.
The two main series stars, Jonathan Groff and Holt McCallany are brilliant in their roles. You may recognise McCallany from Fight Club and Groff from Glee, but this show couldn’t be a further departure from Glee if it tried, which makes Groff’s already electric performance even better.
McCallany plays Bill Tench, an older FBI agent who has a good few years of experience under his belt. Groff plays Holden Ford, a young maverick, who barges his way towards progress, regardless of who gets caught up in the collateral damage. The two work fantastically together and the chemistry between the two actors is one of the best things about this show.
The supporting cast are also solid, with Hannah Gross standing out as Holden’s girlfriend, as well as Anna Torv, who plays a doctor of psychology helping the two detectives analyse the data that they collect from interviews held with various serial killers. The serial killers featured throughout the show are also memorable, especially Jerry Brudos and Ed Kemper. Cameron Britton, who plays Kemper, gives a subtly terrifying performance and is exponentially engaging for every minute that he is onscreen.
The performances are helped with a brilliant script. The dialogue is snappy and effective, causing as many existential questions as it does unorthodox observations. Fincher’s direction, is of course, fantastic and the other directors who work on this show also do a good job. The soundtrack to the show is sometimes antithetic to what is going on in the storyline, but it is always effective and never distracting. The shot composition and cinematography was also on point in each episode, with some really effective imagery being implemented throughout.
Overall, this is a brilliantly made, psychological thriller. The writing is of a very high standard and the performances are excellent all around. If you are a fan of serial killer stories or anything David Fincher has worked on before, this will be for you. The characters are all interesting and deep and although they may do some questionable things, I can’t wait to see where this endeavour takes them next.
I really hope that Netflix can come to some sort of a deal with Fincher to make more seasons of Mindhunter. I genuinely think that this is one of the best TV shows from the past five years and it would be a real shame if we never got any more from this story.
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