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Maniac (1980)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Horror  |  6 March 1981 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 9,291 users  
Reviews: 176 user | 123 critic

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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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Maniac (1980)

Maniac (1980) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Spinell ...
...
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
Carol Henry ...
Deadbeat
Nelia Bacmeister ...
Louis Jawitz ...
Art Director
Denise Spagnuolo ...
Denise
Edit

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 »


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
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's distributor had a unique campaign to support its release in New York: mini-screen kiosks were set up in front of theatres that were showing the film in 1980 that had several minutes of un-cut footage, including gory murders. However, the campaign backfired when Gene Siskel condemned it on both his regular TV reporting and "At The Movies", leading to a backlash against the film's violence and the cancellation of plans to have the kiosks used in such major markets as Chicago and Los Angeles. 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

[looks down at his latest victim]
Frank Zito: Now you tell me what I should do. I heard about it, I always do. I can't go out for a minute. It's impossible. Fancy girls, in their fancy dresses and lipstick, laughing and dancing. Should you stop them? I can't stop them. But you do, don't you? And they can't laugh and they can't dance anymore. You've got to stop, or they'll take you away from me. I will never, ever, let them take you away from me. You're mine now forever. And, I'm so happy.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fangoria Puppets (2011) 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
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
What's a good son to do???
10 June 2005 | by (Laguna Hills, CA) – See all my reviews

Poor Frank.

As a child, Momma was a mean hooker who used to lock him in the closet while she turned tricks. She loved those men and their money more than she ever did her own son. How's a sweet & innocent child to recover?

Kill em all!! That's how!!

As an adult, Frank Zito now wanders the lonely streets of New York nightly, looking out for his next victim. Whether it' a hooker, a cheating spouse, a snooty model, or just someone out and about in the late night hour, Frank's M.O. is always the same : Kill em, Scalp em, take their head of hair home, and nail it onto one of the several female mannequins around his scummy apartment.

Good boy Frank!

Now Frankie doesn't have to be lonely anymore. He has a department store full of victims around his apartment, all to himself! They will never leave, and will be kept always by Frank.

This guy has a lot of heart, and it shows.

Maniac isn't the fastest paced movie, but it has some of the most awesome graphic violence that 80's horror produced (thank you Tom Savini!). The late Joe Spinell (who also co-wrote) is simply irresistible as Frank Zito. He's terrifying, childish, maniacal, and downright lovable as the crazed New York madman.

Maniac is gritty, dark, horrifying, and directed in many parts as a "documentary" film, allowing the viewer to see things through Franks eyes. You feel like your right along for the ride with this fine gent!

It's a beauty of a horror film, one not to be forgotten after the credits roll.


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