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A psychopath, troubled by his childhood abuse, loose in New York City, kills young women and takes their scalps as his trophies. Will he find the perfect woman in a photographer, and end his killing spree?

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Abigail Clayton ...
Rita (as Gail Lawrence)
Kelly Piper ...
Nurse
Rita Montone ...
Hooker
...
Disco Boy
Hyla Marrow ...
Disco Girl
...
Beach Boy (as James Brewster)
Linda Lee Walter ...
Beach Girl
Tracie Evans ...
Street Hooker
...
Second Nurse
...
Deadbeat
Nelia Bacmeister ...
Louis Jawitz ...
Art Director
Denise Spagnuolo ...
Denise
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Storyline

Frank Zito misses his mother, who was killed in a car accident years before. She was abusive to him, and made money selling her body, but Frank still misses her. He tries to keep her from leaving him, and reform her evil ways, by killing young women and putting their scalps on mannequins which he displays around his apartment. Photographer Anna D'Antoni takes a picture of him in the park, and he pursues and befriends her. Is she the one he has been looking for or just another mother wannabe? Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Run from this man! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 March 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Maníaco  »

Box Office

Budget:

$350,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The dummy used for the exploding head scene had been used extensively by Tom Savini for effects in Dawn of the Dead (1978). After its use in this film, it was so saturated in fake blood and gore that it was decided to retire the dummy (which Tom had named "Boris"). According to Savini, the dummy was locked in the trunk of the car used in the shotgun scene and sunk in the East River. See more »

Goofs

When Frank slits the woman's throat on the beach, the knife makes no contact with the throat, even though blood spurts forth from the wound. See more »

Quotes

Rita: Don't kill me. Don't kill me. Frank, don't kill me.
Frank Zito: No, no. I'm not going to kill you. I'm just going to keep you so you won't go away ever again!
[drives a switchblade into her heart]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Maniac Men (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Compliment Your Leading Lady
Written by Don Armando/Coati Mundi (as Andy Hernandez)
Performed by Don Armando's 2nd Avenue Rhumba Band
Courtesy of ZE Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Gory as hell no-holds-barred slasher flick.
30 March 2002 | by (Chyby, Poland) – See all my reviews

"Maniac" is one of the most visceral examples of the horror genre.Along with Romano Scavolini's "Nightmare"(1981)it is one of the most disturbing horror films ever made.The killings presented here are cold-blooded,extremely brutal and gory."Maniac" in its almost pornographic depiction of violence makes any "Friday the 13th" film look tame.Joe Spinell is perfect as a maniac killer Frank Zito,who graphically murders and scalps his victims.Caroline Munro("Kronos","Slaughter High")is really hot as a young fashion photographer.The gore effects made by Tom Savini are simply spectacular-the head explosion scene has to be one of the most amazing moments in cinematic history.The amount of gore splashed in this sequence is incredible.The direction by William Lustig("Maniac Cop" series,"The Violation of Claudia")is well-handled,the acting is fairly convincing and the atmosphere is really ugly and disturbing.Definitely one to avoid if you're politically correct,but if you like confrontional stuff you can't miss it.10 out of 10.See it now!


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