Johnny Roastbeef’s review published on Letterboxd:
David, David, David...40 minutes too long I’m afraid pal. There’s so much content here that the film becomes unnecessarily convoluted and far too in-depth, certainly from a characterisation point of view anyway. Also I have an issue with the plot, but as I don’t know what is fact based and what isn’t I will aim my issue at both James Vanderbilt’s screenplay and the SFPD: **SPOILER** why did it take 22 years to show the guy, who got shot at the beginning of the movie, Arthur Leigh Allen’s photo if Allen was a suspect some 17 years or so earlier?**END OF SPOILER** Having said all that, when the film begins to pick up pace, some two thirds of a way in, I finally got to see the excellent storytelling I have come to expect from this director.
I’m an admirer of David Fincher’s work, but Zodiac (2007) lacks the consistent adrenaline fuelled pace of Fincher’s more notable works Se7en (1995), Fight Club (1999) and The Social Network (2010). Jake Gyllenhaal and Mark Ruffalo put in solid performances, but Robert Downey Jr.’s involvement would’ve definitely been a casualty as a result of chopping away those 40 minutes as would the killing sprees. That’s not a criticism of Downey Jr.’s performance because he is good in this it’s just a necessary evil, along with the murders, to achieve a more complete and consistent movie experience.