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The Sadist (1963)

Unrated | | Thriller | 1967 (West Germany)
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Three people driving into Los Angeles for a Dodgers game have car trouble and pull off into an old wrecking yard where they are held at bay by a bloodthirsty psycho and his crazy girlfriend.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Charles A. 'Charlie' Tibbs
...
Ed Stiles
Marilyn Manning ...
Judy Bradshaw
Don Russell ...
Carl Oliver
Helen Hovey ...
Doris Page
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Storyline

Three people driving into Los Angeles for a Dodgers game have car trouble and pull off into an old wrecking yard where they are held at bay by a bloodthirsty psycho and his crazy girlfriend.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Never before a motion picture Rampacked with... Suspense... Terror... Sudden Shock, as The SADIST See more »

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Thriller

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1967 (West Germany)  »

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Profile of Terror  »

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1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This low-budget film was noted for its excellent cinematography. It was the first American film for Vilmos Zsigmond who was working under the name William Zsigmond See more »

Goofs

Charlie has a crippled walk which comes and goes throughout the film. See more »

Quotes

Ed Stiles: Who would believe in something like this?
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User Reviews

 
WAY above average b-movie fare
11 January 2006 | by (Texas) – See all my reviews

While I've long been familiar with z-movies "Eegah!" and "The Wild Guitar," this film, from the same people, slipped under my radar for years – which is really a shame. Every bit as good as any big-studio, low-budget production from the era (perhaps even better than most), "The Sadist" is truly a gem that'll never receive the recognition it deserves.

Loosely based on serial killer Charles Starkweather, Arch Hall Jr plays Charlie Tibbs, a psychotic delinquent who, aided by his girlfriend, holds three travelers hostage at gunpoint as they attempt to fix their broken-down car, which Charlie intends to use for his getaway. The film is slowly paced and has little plot, but there's so much going for it – particularly as the tension begins to mount. The acting is fantastic all around, not the hokey z-acting that I anticipated. The characterizations are rich and layered, Hall being a completely convincing standout (despite his "Cabbage Patch Kid" looks). The cinematography is fantastically detailed, with a variety of haunting visuals and innovative shots. The musical score is unobtrusive and perfectly suits the on screen action (and lack thereof).

The thing that astounds me most is how well this film has aged. The junkyard location is sort of timeless, the dialogue isn't stilted and dated like most other films of the era and no pop culture (except Coca-Cola) date it to any specific place and time. Even "Psycho," a film whose success they'd intended to ride the coattails of, is far more dated than this one. It's a psychological character movie, pure and simple. And it's because of the simplicity of the whole thing that it'll continue to stand the test of time. The one and only complaint that I have is the title, that doesn't quite suit it. Nonetheless, it's a great classic thriller and I hope that it will find the audience that it deserves on DVD.


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