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Movie review: Disturbing 'Blue Caprice' explores minds of killers

Published October 11, 2013 1:18 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The psychological drama "Blue Caprice" is an absorbing trip down a rabbit hole nobody wants to take — into the mad mindset of two real-life serial killers.

In this case, those killers are John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, who were convicted in the 2002 "Beltway Sniper" attacks that killed 10 and injured three around the Washington, D.C., area.

Director Alexandre Moors and screenwriter R.F.I. Porto examine the roots of the relationship, first in Antigua where the orphaned teen Malvo (played by Tequan Richmond) is befriended by the charismatic Muhammad (Isaiah Washington) and brought to Tacoma, Wash. There, Malvo starts to hear Muhammad talk about custody battles with his ex-wife, his conspiracy theories about "vampires" and his manipulations to get Malvo to kill to prove his love for his new father figure.

Moors and Porto paint a stark portrait of Muhammad's paranoia and Malvo's desperation to cling to his mentor no matter how insane his rantings. Neither the filmmakers nor the actors make a play for cheap sympathy, but their efforts to explain their murderous plans make for an unsettling viewing experience.

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'Blue Caprice'

Opens Friday, Oct. 11, at the Tower Theatre; rated R for disturbing violent content, language and brief drug use; 93 minutes.