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Berserk (1967)

Not Rated | | Horror, Mystery, Thriller | 11 January 1968 (USA)
A scheming circus owner finds her authority challenged when the show is targeted by a vicious killer.

Director:

Jim O'Connolly

Writers:

Aben Kandel (original story and screenplay), Herman Cohen (original story and screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joan Crawford ... Monica Rivers
Ty Hardin ... Frank Hawkins
Diana Dors ... Matilda
Michael Gough ... Albert Dorando
Judy Geeson ... Angela Rivers
Robert Hardy ... Detective Supt. Brooks
Geoffrey Keen ... Commissioner Dalby
Sydney Tafler Sydney Tafler ... Harrison Liston
George Claydon ... Bruno Fontana
Philip Madoc ... Lazlo
Ambrosine Phillpotts ... Miss Burrows
Thomas Cimarro Thomas Cimarro ... Gaspar
Peter Burton ... Gustavo
Golda Casimir Golda Casimir ... Bearded Lady
Ted Lune Ted Lune ... Skeleton Man
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Storyline

Monica Rivers is the owner and ringmaster of a traveling circus, and she'll stop at nothing to draw bigger audiences. When a series of mysterious murders begins to occur and some of her performers die gruesomely, her profits soar. She hires high-wire walker Frank Hawkins, impressed by the handsome and muscular young man. They begin an affair which arouses her previous lover Durando's jealousy. When Durando is found dead shortly afterward, the other performers begin to take alarm, as a mysterious killer is obviously loose in their midst. Many suspect Monica herself of the killings, especially Matilda, who has set her sights on Monica's new lover. At this point, Monica's unruly, sixteen-year-old daughter Angela is expelled from school for being incorrigible, and Monica is forced to take her into the circus, allowing her to become the partner of knife-thrower Gustavo. Meanwhile, the dead bodies continue to pile up... Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The motion picture that pits steel weapons against steel nerves!!! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 January 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Circus of Terror See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Two performers dressed as Batman and Robin appear in the circus, at the beginning of the London premiere, with all of the other circus performers. Michael Gough, who played Albert Dorando in this film, played Alfred the butler in the 1989-1997 series of Batman films. See more »

Goofs

Although the film takes place at The Great Rivers Circus, all the elephants' headdresses bear the initials "BS" - for Billy Smart's Circus, the real circus they performed in. See more »

Quotes

Monica Rivers: The French Revolution could have been avoided if Louis XVI had given the people a reason to celebrate.
Frank Hawkins: Don't forget what happened to Marie Antoinette.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Joan Crawford: The Ultimate Movie Star (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

It Might Be Me
Written, Arranged and Performed by John Scott as Patrick John Scott
Performed by Circus ensemble
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
The circus is in town
12 July 2007 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

In the wake of her brilliant "Whatever happened to Baby Jane" (1962) ,with a pleasing grasp of continuity ,Joan Crawford continued in the thriller vein.Unfortunately there is no Robert Aldrich here (and no Bette Davis either).

Actually we are closer to "Straight Jacket" (1964) which was a hilarious camp fest."Berserk" is more "conventional" which does not mean "plausible".When you know the killer's identity which I won't reveal of course,you'll say to yourself "how come?"."Berserk!" is primarily a whodunit à la Agatha Christie (doesn't it take place in England?The- murderer- is -among -us- and- pretty- soon -someone- else is-gonna- die stuff),but without anything of the writer's algebra .

Nevertheless,the circus is the place where you dangerously live.Anything can happen during the show so there is a good suspense which would not be sustained if the action took place,say,in a forest near a lake.The high-wire walker,the knives-thrower's partner,the girls under the elephant's feet,the lion tamer ,and Diana Dors in her box waiting for the saw which will cut her in two halves ,all are in danger even if the murderer does not strike.That's the strength of the movie.


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