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Maniac (1980)

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:

You can lock your windows and doors...But you can't lock the madman out of your mind. 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

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director William Lustig stated that co-writer and star Joe Spinell had to prepare for the lead villain role of New York serial killer Frank Zito by doing research on real life serial killers such as Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, David 'Son of Sam' Berkowitz, and others as well as he went to strange excite places to really get into the role. Also, Lustig stated that there was even a real murder of a prostitute in the same hotel (the Hotel St. James) where they were filming Joe as Frank's scene killing a prostitute around the same time and the real life killer was never caught. People dressed up fake mannequins with the victims clothes to see if they can identify them as well what the character Frank does in the movie with his victims. See more »

Goofs

When the prostitute is describing her services to Frank, she says "For 75, I'll take you around the world." But her mouth don't match what she's saying. See more »

Quotes

Frank Zito: How come all your models are women?
Anna D'Antoni: Well, it's just something I'm interested in, as a woman. In fact, this is my fourth series. It's called "Women Form". Not very original is it?
Frank Zito: Well, it's not the title that matters that much.
Anna D'Antoni: No, I guess not.
Frank Zito: Do you get to keep them all?
Anna D'Antoni: I'm hoping to sell them.
Frank Zito: I wouldn't. I'd keep them forever.
Anna D'Antoni: But why? Part of my profession is to sell photographs. It's not all for art's sake you know.
Frank Zito: I know, but why do you take pictures of women this way?
Anna D'Antoni: I like to make ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Der Todesking (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Goin' to a Showdown
Written by Adriana Kaegi (as Kaegi)
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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