Movie Review: Chapter 27

April 17, 2008 By:
Movie Review: Chapter 27

An eerie, disturbing, and uncomfortable journey into the life of the man who is responsible for the assassination of late Beatles great John Lennon. Jared Leto (Requiem for A Dream, American Psycho, Fight Club) gained over 60 pounds to play the role of Mark David Chapman, in the days leading up to the unforgettable and infamous night of December 8, 1980. Leto completely transforms into the character, causing us to be disgusted of him, as well as, his antics, decisions, and logic behind why he is destined to kill John Lennon.

Writer director J.P. Schaefer couldn't have asked for more from his lead actor Jared Leto in his directorial debut "Chapter 27." The unimaginably overweight Leto is Mark David Chapman, a young man who plots to do the unthinkable... Slowly slipping into insanity, Chapman travels to New York in early December 1980, to go forth with his plan to assassinate musician John Lennon. Completely alienated from all of his surroundings, Chapman's madness begins to become overwhelming as he continues to stand in front of the Dakota (ex-Beatle's home in NYC) waiting for Lennon to walk out. During these few days, Chapman bullies and continually annoys a young, die-hard Lennon fan, Jude (Lindsay Lohan), while constantly harassing and arguing with a photographer (Judah Friedlander, from the show 30 Rock) who is also there to take a paparazzi style shot of the great Lennon himself. During all this commotion, Chapman never takes his mind off of what he is there to do, figure out the perfect way to carry out the unforgettable.

Not a great film altogether, however, Leto is amazing! His transformation is not as superb, but could easily be compared to the male version of Charlize Theron in "Monster." "Chapter 27" is upsetting, discomfiting, and dark. Some scenes of great dialogue and detail of the tragic day linger throughout, and the banter between Leto and Friedlander, as brief as it is, is surprising. And, what I learned after viewing the film is, it was called "Chapter 27" because Mark David Chapman believed that if he killed John Lennon, that would be his way of writing the 27th chapter in the 26 chapter long book, "Catcher In The Rye," which Chapman claims is the reason he did what he did... The book "Catcher In The Rye" told him to do it.

Pat the Movie Critic gives "Chapter 27" --- 2 1/2 Scoops.