The Poughkeepsie Tapes

The Poughkeepsie Tapes

Fails to follow any form of logic, presenting the tapes within its faux-documentary format with consistent video effects and dramatic music and then pretending that they've been unaltered (and why would scenes of legit torture be allowed to be shown in a documentary anyway?). These tapes, which feature a hysterically ghoulish performance for the killer, feature no actual substance of terror, just suggestions of old tropes and better movies - and the occasional use of a balloon fetish to inspire fear, which I just found absurd.

Surrounding the titular objects are a series of ineptly performed interview segments, none of which feature remotely human behaviour or real investigative technique. At a certain point, I began to wonder/hope this was actually an elaborate parody of the crime documentary, for that would make my laughter feel less cruel and its writing feel deliberately amateurish. Regardless of intention, at least the filmmakers gave me this gem:

A man whose onscreen title is, and I shit you not, "Dismemberment Expert," gives the following (paraphrased) testimony: 'It's unusual for a killer to go downwards with their dismembering. Usually, they start with a handsaw, it's a bit messy and clumsy, next time they get a stronger one, keep getting better and better saws. This guy, though ... started with a handsaw, then he would just switch around; circular saw, table saw, back to handsaw, a rusted saw, then back to electrical. Never seen anyone do that.

Probably why he did it, actually'.


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