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Madness (1980) More at IMDbPro »Vacanze per un massacro (original title)


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Fernando Di Leo (screenplay)
Mario Gariazzo (story)
Release Date:
20 March 1980 (Italy) See more »
User Reviews:
The "Last House on the Left" Influence Continues See more (7 total) »


  (in credits order)

Joe Dallesandro ... Joe Brezzi
Lorraine De Selle ... Paola - sister of Liliana
Patrizia Behn ... Liliana - wife of Sergio (as Patricia Bhen)
Gianni Macchia ... Sergio

Directed by
Fernando Di Leo 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Fernando Di Leo  screenplay
Mario Gariazzo  story

Produced by
Armando Novelli .... producer
Original Music by
Luis Bacalov 
Cinematography by
Enrico Lucidi 
Film Editing by
Amedeo Giomini 
Production Design by
Francesco Cuppini 
Costume Design by
Carolina Ferrara 
Makeup Department
Placida Crapanzano .... hair stylist
Giuseppe Ferranti .... makeup artist
Gloria Granati .... makeup artist
Lidia Puglia .... hair stylist
Production Management
Fabio Diotallevi .... production manager
Sound Department
Goffredo Salvatori .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Maurizio Lucchini .... assistant camera
Mario Sabatelli .... still photographer
Goffredo Salvatori .... camera operator
Editorial Department
Ornella Chistolini .... assistant editor
Other crew
Vincenzo Samà .... production secretary
Patrizia Zulini .... script supervisor (as Patrizia Amelia Zulini)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Vacanze per un massacro" - Italy (original title)
See more »
85 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

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15 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
The "Last House on the Left" Influence Continues, 7 September 2004
Author: babycarrot67 from Columbus, Ohio

"Vacation for a Massacre" is yet another in the long string of (mostly Italian) films that noticeably imitate the 1972 US megahit "Last House on the Left", and this film by Fernando Di Leo (director of the infamous "Slaughter Hotel")is certainly one of the best. The plot is simple and familiar: An escaped convicted murderer (Joe Dallesandro)invades the cottage of a man (Gianni Macchia), his wife (Patrizia Bhen) and the wife's sister (Lorraine de Selle), and proceeds to torment this already dysfunctional trio with rape and violence. Di Leo clearly made the most of the film's low budget by eliciting excellent performances from his cast, especially in the case of Dallesandro, who is known mostly for his constant full-frontal nudity in several Andy Warhol films, not his acting skills. While Dallesandro's work here is rather flat, Di Leo keeps Dallesandro's dialog to a minimum. This, coupled with the fact that Dallesandro has a talent for showing good expression with his eyes, and Di Leo never fails to include one of these shots when necessary to make up for other qualities lacking, makes the film succeed when, in another director's hands, it could have faltered due to a lack of directorial understanding of his actor. Macchia, who worked with Di Leo at least twice before, and de Selle, who clearly enjoys her constant nudity as well, are pros at this and their unlikeable characters are nevertheless compelling thanks to their thoughtful performances. I am not familiar with Bhen's other roles, but in the final reel she manages to deliver the necessary winning performance that is repressed in the first half of the film. Another major asset is Luis Enriquez Bacalov's eccentric, unnerving score, which ranges from classical (borrowing the theme from the superior 1971 film he scored entitled "The Designated Victim" with Tomas Milan) to near heavy-metal guitar riffs. The combination of the basic plot and Di Leo at the helm, knowing that his films are rarely pretty, ensures that the film is a gritty, sometimes necessarily unpleasant, but ultimately very satisfying exploitation film viewing experience. The English-subtitled print available on a US bootleg does not look bad at all, but I would get it on a DVD-R and not a VHS, as the disc will retain the master's tape's sharper picture quality.

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