This 'River' runs slowly

Monday, September 6, 2004

Based on a true story and a book that inspired "The Silence of the Lambs," the cable drama "The Riverman" (7 p.m., A&E) explores the peculiar collaboration between homicide detective Robert Keppel (Bruce Greenwood) and convicted serial killer Ted Bundy (Cary Elwes) to solve the mystery of the Green River Killer, a serial murderer who would eventually confess to slaying more than 40 women.

As the film makes abundantly clear, Keppel is gifted at getting inside the mind of a killer, but he's a tad uncomfortable and afraid of the consequences of spending so much time thinking like a psychopath. His dutiful wife (Kathleen Quinlan) is none too happy about having Bundy's evil presence in her home. Her hand wringing and Keppel's brooding may be understandable, but they often slow an already grim drama to a deliberative crawl.

Tonight's other highlights