IMDb > Truth or Dare?: A Critical Madness (1986)

Truth or Dare?: A Critical Madness (1986) More at IMDbPro »

Truth or Dare?: A Critical Madness -- Mike Strauber goes mad when finding his wife Sharon in bed with his best friend Jerry. He retreats into an imaginary world of 'truth or dare', as he did when he was a deranged child, where hallucinatory friends 'dare' him into horrid acts of self-mutilation. Institutionalized, Mike continues to play truth or dare and manages to maul his face, covering it with a homemade copper mask. He escapes from the institution and goes on one of the most bizarre road rampages ever committed to celluloid (including a drive-by chainsawing!) that has to be seen to be believed, culminating in a bizarre confrontation with his wife. This is the 1986 cult classic horror film that helped jumpstart the entire "made directly for video" craze and was voted "One Of The Top 13 Slasher Films Of All Time" on in 2009!


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Mike Strauber catches his wife Sharon in bed with his best friend Jerry. He gets mad and takes off to... See more » | Add synopsis »
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  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
John Brace ... Mike Strauber
Mary Fanaro ... Sharon Strauber
Bruce Gold ... Jerry Powers

A.J. McLean ... Little Mike (as Alexander J. McLean)
Christopher Bontempo ... Playmate
Jon Creamer ... Playmate
Christine Duff ... Playmate
Jennifer Duff ... Playmate
Priscilla Duff ... Mike's Mother
Kerry Ellen Walker ... Hitch-Hiker
D.C. 'Dash' Goff ... Park Ranger (as Dash Goff)
Rick Paige ... Dr. Thorne
Mona Jones ... Dr. Evans
Bruce Paquette ... Garage Attendent
Edward L. Elliott II ... Man-Next-Door
Therese C. Elliott ... Woman-Next-Door
Raymond Carbone ... Detective Rosenberg
Geoffrey Miller ... Wes
Tami Smith ... Dr. Bachman
Norm Rosenbaum ... Bald Man
Asbestos Felt ... Warty Man / Newscaster Voice
Anthony T. Townes ... Guard #1

Joel D. Wynkoop ... Guard #2 (as Joel Wynkoop)
Pam Weitzman ... Woman With Carriage
Baby Duff ... Baby In Carriage
Jere Beery ... Teen Punk
Christine Efstathion ... Teen Punk
Rachel Rutz ... Teen Punk

Valerie Gobos ... Station Wagon Family
Joe Scheurer ... Station Wagon Family
Michele Bellefeuille ... Station Wagon Family
Lydia Kring ... Station Wagon Family
Kelly Dreber ... Teen In Flashback
Robert Gann ... Teen In Flashback
Wendy Ritter ... Teen In Flashback
Terence Andreucci ... Pournelle (as Terrence Andreucci)
Richard K. Day ... Officer Down
Si Stillerman ... Medical Examiner
Scott Weitzman ... Baseball Player
Timothy Wellman ... Boy in Flashback
Cynthia Frisch ... Bus Stop Victim
Jim Frisch ... Bus Stop Victim
Ted Frisch ... Bus Stop Victim
Angelina Rodell ... Old Lady
Margaret Carbone ... Dispatcher (voice)
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Directed by
Tim Ritter 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Tim Ritter 

Produced by
Geoffrey Miller .... executive producer
Steven R. Weitzman .... executive producer
Yale Wilson .... producer
Original Music by
Johnny Britt 
Ken Karlson 
Cinematography by
Christopher M. Burritt 
Ned Miller 
Film Editing by
Jack Behrend 
Set Decoration by
Valerie Gobos 
Costume Design by
Valerie Gobos 
Makeup Department
Steve Prouty .... special makeup effects artist
Production Management
Yale Wilson .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Steve Feldott .... first assistant director (as Steven J. Feldott)
Art Department
Kyle Barth .... assistant set decorator
Arthur Guse .... storyboard artist
Joel D. Wynkoop .... props (as Joel Wynkoop)
Sound Department
Ric Coken .... sound re-recording mixer
Jon Lind .... additional sound
Timothy Logue .... boom operator
Mike Moats .... sound technical consultant
Jim Moore .... sound effects
Glenn Selig .... location sound recordist
Shawn Snowden .... sound re-recording mixer
Special Effects by
Bob Shelley .... special effects
Jere Beery .... stunt coordinator
C.D. Kingera .... stunts
Bob Shelley .... stunts
Joel D. Wynkoop .... stunts (as Joel Wynkoop)
Camera and Electrical Department
James R. Frazier .... assistant camera
Geoffrey Miller .... best boy
Scott Mumford .... grip
Al Pavoni .... assistant camera (as Al 'Tiko' Pavoni)
Todd Smith .... gaffer
Casting Department
Priscilla Duff .... casting (as Priscilla Sue Duff)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Kyle Barth .... assistant wardrobe
Valerie Gobos .... wardrobe
Music Department
Jim Cogan .... music mixer
Jim Cogan .... music recordist
Other crew
Jeff Allen .... production assistant
Donna Beery .... production assistant
Pamela D'Amico .... production assistant
Sherri Gilman-Tompkins .... unit publicist
Roberta McElroy .... location manager
Bonnie Neilia .... craft service (as Bonnie Nielia)
Malinda Shelley .... production assistant
Cecelia von der Heyde .... production secretary
Susan Knox Wilson .... production auditor
Susan Knox Wilson .... production coordinator
Bob Wright .... production assistant
Robert Wright .... production assistant

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Truth or Dare" - USA (alternative title)
"Truth or Dare?" - USA (alternative title)
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Norway:90 min | USA:87 min (DVD release)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Norway:18 (video premiere) | UK:18 | USA:Not Rated
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Revealing mistakes: During most of the film, but especially the end scene where Mike Strauber is shot, his "copper" mask appears to move with his breaths, indicating its true rubber state.See more »
Critical MadnessSee more »


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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
Four Words (not including "and"): Bad, Awful, Amazing, and Horrible, 3 August 2007
Author: yetanotherharris from Satan's Colon

I love bad movies, and I love this movie. I first saw this in the late eighties, when two of my adolescent friends and I rented it. Where that rental store came across this little gem, I'll never know. Little did we realize at the time, this movie was directed by a man only a few years older than we were.

The fact that Tim Ritter was a mere eighteen years of age when he directed TRUTH OR DARE? certainly gave this flick an amateurish taint. The fact that the producers tried to take over directing when the movie was almost done shooting, shortly after they discovered how young the director was...well, that made it a whole lot worse. The end product is a movie full of bad actors, bad music, and more plot holes than a block of Swiss plot-cheese. Nevertheless, this movie is hysterically funny, and a must-see for die-hard fans of gory, so-bad-it's-good 80's flicks.

Mike Strauber (John Brace), comes home to pick something up for work, to find that his wife, Sharon (Mary Fanaro), is having sex with his friend Jerry (Bruce Gold). He snaps, runs off, drives around having flashbacks revolving around two brief conversations with his wife, then picks up some big-haired hitchhiker. The two go to a campsite and play truth or dare. Except in this version, they dare each other to MUTILATE THEMSELVES! That's right! "I dare you to pull out your eye...with THIS!" Mike Strauber yells at the hitchhiker. By the end of the scene, he's pulled out his tongue because the hitchhiker (evidently an hallucination) dared him to.

Later, we are told that Mike Strauber can speak without his tongue because he worked extensively with a speech therapist. Yes, this is seriously what the doctors say.

I honestly wish that this movie could get released as part of a Tim Ritter boxed set. His movies, particularly his early works, are truly a source of inspiration. Fair warning, though; if you cannot tolerate bad acting (and I mean REALLY bad acting--not as bad as in Italian zombie flicks, but worse than the average American porno), do not watch this film. Personally, however, I think the So-Bad-It's-Good label fits very well in this case, and anyone who likes these types of movies should love TRUTH OR DARE? -- A CRITICAL MADNESS.

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