The dialogue featured in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is sparse yet brilliant. One of my favorite lines happens when Becky, sister of Ottis and love interest of Henry, asks Henry "Did you really kill your mama?" Henry admits he did kill his mother during this conversation and states, "Yeah. I killed my mama. One night. It was my 14th birthday. She was drunk, and we had an argument. She hit me with a whiskey bottle. I shot her. I shot her dead." Somehow Henry forgets how he killed his mother in this same conversation. I dare anyone else to find another serial killer film with such genius dialogue and conversations.
Surprisingly, Henry is not the most deranged of characters in Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. Ottis is into murder, homosexuality, and sadomasochistic incest. He spends his days drinking beer and kicking in TV screens. Ottis Toole, despite his lack of humanity, is no doubt a true American. Henry and Ottis have a good serial killer relationship at first, but mental illness is bound to make one of these fellows snap. Henry is forced to put a little disciplinary action on Ottis that has deadly results.
The music featured is Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is a sort of eerie corny style that parallels the feeling of the overall film. Despite the films lack of budget, all of the artistic variables add up right. There is nothing more soothing than when Henry and Ottis drive down the road as the score of Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer powers the scene. Henry and Ottis are the real Night Stalkers.
Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is a classic and masterpiece of the horror genre. It is a film that follows the habits of a real nomadic serial killer in pathetic depth. Serial killers aren't mystical geniuses with some type of black magic power. Most of them are white trash individuals that were abused as children and of course latent homosexuals. I salute Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer director John McNaughton for directing such a sick and solid film.