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Murder Syndrome (1981)
"Murder obsession (Follia omicida)" (original title)

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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 273 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 30 critic

Michael is a successful actor, but he has a scandal in his past: at a tender age he knifed his father to death. He and his girlfriend Deborah go to his mother's for the weekend, and are ... See full summary »


(as Robert Hampton)


(screenplay), (story), 4 more credits »
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Title: Murder Syndrome (1981)

Murder Syndrome (1981) on IMDb 5.6/10

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Complete credited cast:
Stefano Patrizi ...
Michael Stanford
Martine Brochard ...
Henri Garcin ...
Hans Schwartz
Laura Gemser ...
Anita Strindberg ...
Silvia Dionisio ...
Fabrizio Moroni


Michael is a successful actor, but he has a scandal in his past: at a tender age he knifed his father to death. He and his girlfriend Deborah go to his mother's for the weekend, and are joined by the director and others from a recent film project, who are given a rather cool reception by the superstitious housekeeper Oliver. Soon rude things begin happening to some of the guests, and Michael fears a repeat of his nightmare past is in progress. Written by Ed Sutton <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

past | fear | death | weekend | actor | See more »


Horror | Mystery


Not Rated | See all certifications »





Release Date:

24 February 1981 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Murder Syndrome  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Featured in Zombiethon (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

Decent hybrid of the American slasher and the Italian horror film
12 February 2013 | by (Edinburgh, Scotland, UK) – See all my reviews

Murder Obsession is the final film from Italian horror director Riccardo Freda, the man responsible for films such as the crazy The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire. Like that one, this is a giallo too, although it's one of the sub-grouping that combines supernatural goings on into the mix. I haven't seen too many of Freda's films but this is my favourite so far. The mystery is diverting enough, while there are some pretty impressive moments of the bizarre, such as the weird, surreal dream sequence where a girl finds herself in a world of madness and black magic with a few nasty surprises. It's quite gory too, although some of the effects are a little ropey.

While this is clearly not in the upper bracket of Italian horror, it's a pretty decent feature from the second division. The atmosphere is quite effective and the music is of that early 80's synth type you will have heard in countless American slashers. I guess this is a movie that was trying to pass itself off as an American product, it feels a lot more Americanised than most in the giallo genre. The cast are definitely of the Euro variety though. Anita Strindberg (The Case of the Scorpion's Tail) plays the mother, even though she must be only five years older than the actor playing her son at most. Laura Gemser, star of many Eurotrash flicks such as Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals, also appears as an actress friend of the protagonist.

If you like American slashers and Italian giallo strangeness then this film certainly combines these two ingredients.

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