Douglas, a record salesman, is an obsessive fan of actress Sally Ross. When his letters are rejected, he strikes out at her and her loved ones.

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Storyline

Douglas is a lonesome record salesman and a true fan of the actress Sally Ross. Every day he writes her gleaming letters of love. But the only response he gets are formal letters. So his love turns into hatred. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

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The final act is murder. See more »

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Drama | Horror | Thriller

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R | See all certifications »
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15 May 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Trance  »

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Trivia

Hollywood would make another film under the same title about fifteen years after this movie was made. The Fan (1996) was not a remake of this thriller but a sports movie though, its title referring to a sports fan. See more »

Quotes

Sally Ross: Look, how long have we been together?
Belle Goldman: Seven years. I must be a masochist.
Sally Ross: And I'm a spoiled bitch.
Belle Goldman: One of the greatest.
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Connections

Referenced in Too Close for Comfort: A Fan for Henry (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

DANGER
Written by The Selecter
Performed by The Selecter
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User Reviews

 
Slashing With Style
28 October 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Lauren Bacall, playing a star very much like Lauren Bacall, has one hugely obsessed fan out there in Michael Biehn. He'll do just about anything to gratify his obsession to be near here and that includes killing just about everyone else he views as a threat.

Even with the presence of a couple of really huge movie legends like Lauren Bacall and James Garner playing her ex-husband and better friend, the film is about The Fan. Michael Biehn is a truly terrifying human being and all the more so because at first glance he looks so incredibly normal and even hunky. Not someone you think would be obsessing over a middle-aged movie queen.

Bacall is really playing herself her. Her Sally Ross just like Lauren in that decade had transplanted herself from Hollywood to Broadway and was scoring great success. The scenes showing the rehearsal for her Broadway show is something I can easily imagine her doing when she was preparing for her role in Company. Bacall is a most famous tenant of that famous building the Dakota on Central Park West and with the angles of the shot we can't tell if it was in fact the Dakota, but it was on the park as there are shots of Biehn watching it from across the street.

The whole film was done on location in New York and one brief scene in the gay bar where Biehn picks up a victim to kill in order to make the police and Bacall believe he committed suicide was the legendary and notorious Haymarket. Back in the days before the AIDS plague hit, it was a legendary spot world wide for rent boys. It closed in the early Eighties as did many such establishments. I'd be curious to know how they got permission to shoot there. Still folks from the New York gay scene will recognize it.

Maureen Stapleton does a nice job as Bacall's secretary who answers her fan letters and who becomes Biehn's first victim as in his twisted mind she's keeping him from his obsession.

When all's said and done The Fan is a slasher flick, but it's a slasher flick with style.


11 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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