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The Strangler (1964)

Unrated | | Horror | 1 April 1964 (USA)
An overweight lab technician with low self esteem, brought on by his dominant mother, becomes a serial killer of female nurses.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Leo Kroll
... Lt. Frank Benson
... Barbara Wells
... Tally Raymond
... Sgt. Mack Clyde
... Mrs. Kroll
Michael Ryan ... Detective Mel Posner
Russ Bender ... Dr. Clarence Sanford
... Clara Thomas, the Nurse
Wally Campo ... Eggerton
Mimi Dillard ... Thelma
... Dr. Morton
John Yates ... Intern
... Police Sketch Artist
Robert Cranford ... Jack Rosten
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Storyline

Leo Kroll, a lab technician in a large unnamed city, is responsible for the strangulation murders of several young nurses. He feels that in some twisted way, that he is getting back at his overbearing shrew of a mother. Leo also kills the nurse who is taking care of his mother in the rest home she is staying at. As a result, Mrs. Kroll dies from a heart attack. He also kills an arcade worker whom he feels can identify him. Written by Brian Washington <Sargebri@att.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

WHY Does He Do It? HOW Does He Do It? WHO Is His Next Victim? See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 April 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Boston Strangler  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Released nearly 3 months after the real Boston Strangler claimed his final victim. See more »

Goofs

LT. Frank Benson puts his pack of cigarettes into his shirt pocket twice. See more »

Crazy Credits

In the main opening titles, actor Michael Ryan has the middle initial "M" in his billing, but it is not in the full cast list in the end credits. See more »

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User Reviews

Buono Showcase
12 May 2013 | by See all my reviews

It's a Buono showcase. His restrained portrait of an unattractive, mother-hating serial killer is a grabber. No wonder he loathes his bed-ridden mom. Obviously, she's brow-beaten him his whole life, taking what little self-esteem he ever had. Now, at thirty, he lumbers around like a fat rhino among sleek gazelles, picking off single women one-by-one and leaving cheap arcade dolls in their place. Somehow in his twisted mind, however, she won't stay dead. No matter how many times he kills her, there she is back again in her bed, making whining demands. He's almost a figure of pity as much as loathing, and it's to actor Buono's credit that he manages to create the difficult mix.

I like the cops here, especially Sgt. Clyde (Barron). They come across more like real cops than the usual. At the same time, their interviews with suspect Kroll (Buono) are little gems of thrust and parry. Director Topper films in straightforward fashion, without the sinister lighting that might be expected, but with good judicious use of close-up. This is not a slasher-type movie. In fact, despite the lurid material, the movie comes across more like a dark psychological study than a horror film, thanks mainly to Buono's shrewdly calculated performance and Topper's refusal to play up the violence.


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