The Boston Strangler (1968)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Mystery  |  16 October 1968 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 5,720 users  
Reviews: 80 user | 57 critic

A series of brutal murders in Boston sparks a seemingly endless and increasingly complex manhunt.



(screenplay), (book)
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Det. Phil DiNatale
Julian Soshnick
Terence Huntley
Det. Frank McAfee
John Asgeirsson
Dianne Cluny
Atty. Gen. Edward W. Brooke
Peter Hurkos
Leora Dana ...
Mary Bottomly
Carolyn Conwell ...
Irmgard DeSalvo
Austin Willis ...
Dr. Nagy
Lara Lindsay ...
Bobbie Eden


Boston is being terrorized by a series of seemingly random murders of women. Based on the true story, the film follows the investigators path through several leads before introducing the Strangler as a character. It is seen almost exclusively from the point of view of the investigators who have very few clues to build a case upon. Written by John Vogel <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Why did 13 women willingly open their doors to the Boston Strangler? See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

16 October 1968 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der Frauenmörder von Boston  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


20th Century Fox originally hired Terence Rattigan to write the screenplay based on the book by Gerold Frank, but he wrote it as a comedy and was replaced by Edward Anhalt. In Rattigan's version, the killer was revealed, by a computer, to be Darryl F. Zanuck. See more »


In the film it is assumed DeSalvo was guilty, and it portrays him as suffering from multiple personality disorder and committing the murders while in a psychotic state. DeSalvo was never diagnosed with, or even suspected of having that disorder. See more »


Albert DeSalvo: What did you tell the children where I am?
Irmgard De Salvo: They haven't asked.
Albert DeSalvo: What... What do you mean, "they haven't asked"?
Irmgard De Salvo: Well, they're only... they're only little children.
Irmgard De Salvo: I know, but... they accept things.
Albert DeSalvo: But... don't they miss me?
See more »

Crazy Credits

This is the true story of Albert Desalvo, the self-confessed Boston Strangler. The characters and incidents you are about to see are based on fact. See more »


Referenced in All in the Family: Prisoner in the House (1975) See more »


There Will Never Be Another You
Music by Harry Warren
Played when Det. Di Natale gives the informant $20 and goes into the bar
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

They say its overrated,but Tony Curtis' performance is electrifying to watch
29 May 2003 | by (Chapel Hill,North Carolina) – See all my reviews

After all the movies that he has done this one shown his acting chops and basically established himself as one of the most distinguish actors in Hollywood,but if you want to see Tony Curtis in a stunning performance as a serial killer,this is the movie to see and not to be missed.

Tony Curtis showed them off brilliantly with his chilling portrayal of confessed 1960's serial killer,Albert DeSalvo who killed and strangled 13 women in the streets of Boston. Curtis is frighteningly good at depicting the schizophrenic life of a seemingly normal family man who hides his sexual compulsions. Here also you have Henry Fonda as the detective out to stopped him and George Kennedy in a co-starring role. Director Richard Fleischer(of "Fantastic Voyage",and "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea" fame)uses a split screen technique show DeSalvo crimes along with the painstaking police investigation that finally nabbed him in 1964. Shocking as it was back in 1968,and still shocking today in one of Tony Curtis' most gripping roles and exhilarating performance.

16 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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