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THE HILLSIDE STRANGLER
UK: Tartan Films
Cast: C Thomas Howell, Nicholas Turturro, Allison Lange, Lin Shaye, Molly Brenner, Aimee Brooks, Hal Cutler, Tricia Dickson, Keva Hargrove, Alexa Jago, Kent Masters King, Zarah Little, Natasha Melnick, Sarah Ann Morris, Kevin Mukherji, Laura Mulrenan, Marisol Padilla Sanchez, Robbie Peron, Ken Rosier, Jennifer Tisdale, Roz Witt, Cletus Young
Director: Chuck Parello
UK: 90 mins
UK Certificate: 18 contains strong sexualised violence and very strong language
UK Release Date: 12 November 2004
The case of the Hillside Strangler is one of the most unusual and gruesome in the annals of American crime. While most serial killers tend to work alone, the twisted criminal careers of Angelo Buono and Kenneth Bianchi proved that evil can run in the family... and that when it comes to serial sex murder, two is far worse than one
This shocking new film is based on the facts of the case. It begins in 1977, as young Kenny (C Thomas Howell) is working as a security guard at a Rochester, N.Y department store, shaking down young ladies in his back "office." Looking for a way out of his dead-end life, he decides to make his way to sunny L.A. and visit his older cousin Angelo (Nick Turturro) who owns a thriving automobile upholstery business.
Once Kenny arrives, Angelo wastes no time showing Kenny the sights and delights of his sleazy Hollywood lifestyle - he favors the young wayward girls, pornography and strip clubs. On one outing he even invites Kenny to join in a little romp with the local talent.
Kenny settles in but doesn't have much luck finding work. And once again he is turned down for the job that he aspires to the most—being a cop.
Fortunes change when Angelo suggests that what they both need is a little action, namely getting into the "whore business." Kenny likes the sound of this, and in no time the two cousins have corralled a little stable of naïve young girls. However, one connection goes bad, burning them with a list of bogus "johns".
Angelo snaps - and he takes Kenny along with him. Out on a cruise in Hollywood, they manage to track down Gabrielle (Kent Masters King), the wily hooker who did them wrong.
She makes the mistake of getting into the car with them, and ten minutes later she's a dead, nude body put on display on a hillside. The reign of terror that would grip Southern California for two years has begun...
Kenny tries to keep his double life secret from steady girlfriend Claire (Allison Lange), but as the bodies of young women pile up around Tinseltown it becomes harder to keep up the façade. Kenny, who came out west with nothing but a head full of dreams, is now a stone cold killer. Soon he will learn that while he and Angelo are bound by blood - in more ways than one - his older cousin is no friend...
Their grisly partnership will end one way or another, cousin turning on cousin, but not before they kidnap, torture, rape and murder fifteen young women in ways almost too sickening to imagine.
But you won't have to. The Hillside Stranglers were all too real, and their crimes still haunt us to this day...