my Movie

Movie Details

Title:   Maniac
Director:   William Lustig
Year:   1980
Genre:   Slasher
Times Seen:   2
Last Seen:   09.27.18

Other Movies Seen By This Director (0)

Notes History
Date Viewed Venue Note
09.27.18Alamo South LamarThis Screening is part of event: FantasticFest 2018
William Lustig was still here to show a second screening of his 4K restoration of Maniac. It was fun to see a real honest-to-goodness horror film with exploding heads and practical blood effects again.

Checking the notes, it looks like I saw this at my very first DVRfest back in 2005. It's funny how my tastes have changed. This time around the inner monologues and whiny moaning that Joe Spinell does were a highlight for me. I also felt like the more extreme Savini effects (the head blowing up and the partial dismemberment scene at the end) were very intense. For all the gore that we get today in films like The Night Comes for Us or Green Room, there's something about the way they did it back then... and also the way they shot it, really lingering on that coverage - even going slow-motion to revel in it - that feels effective to me.

And of course, a fantastic Q&A from Lustig himself. I wish someone would do an extended interview with him. Hmm, maybe they have. Let me look for podcasts. Oh, yeah there are a ton. cool.
11.09.05DVRThis Screening is part of event: DVRfest 2005
A seminal slasher movie from 1980, Maniac goes inside the mind of a madman, letting us watch as he kills attractive women, scalps them, and nails their hair to mannequins for company. Star/writer Joe Spinell is very creepy in a NYC greaseball kind of way... like if Dennis Franz was a bit taller and liked to kill... This movie really has everything you can hope for in a 80s horror movie: Tom Savini effects, hot skinny girls in tight bad fashions, and lots of mindless killing. Unfortunately you also have to put up with near-constant "inner monologue" from the maniac, which is basically just whimpering and groaning. There are a few good gags here though, especially the end and Tom Savini's small part as Disco Boy getting his head blown up via shotgun blast through the windshield of his car.

William Lustig, who would go on to do the Maniac Cop series (i guess he likes that name) has since started up Blue Underground... supplying freaks and mentally unbalanced with the movies we love on DVD since 2002. right on!

My self-imposed marathon continues after a short break to watch South Park.
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