28 user 33 critic

Delirio caldo (1972)

Not Rated | | Mystery, Thriller, War | 5 July 1972 (Italy)
A respected doctor becomes the prime suspect in a series of gruesome murders.


Renato Polselli (as Ralph Brown)


Renato Polselli




Credited cast:
Mickey Hargitay ... Dr. Herbert / husband
Rita Calderoni Rita Calderoni ... Marcia / wife
Raul Lovecchio Raul Lovecchio ... Edwards / Inspector (as Raoul)
Carmen Young Carmen Young ... Bonita (US version only)
Christa Barrymore Christa Barrymore ... Joaquine
Tano Cimarosa ... John Lacey 'Crocchetta'
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marcello Bonini Olas Marcello Bonini Olas ... Barman
Katia Cardinali Katia Cardinali ... Miss Heindrich
William Darni William Darni ... Willy
Max Dorian Max Dorian ... Richard
Stefania Fassio Stefania Fassio ... prima vittima / First victim (as Steffy Steffen)
Stefano Oppedisano Stefano Oppedisano ... Journalist
Cristina Perrier Cristina Perrier ... Laurel
Learn more

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A crazed and sadistic sex maniac is on the loose, despite the esteemed criminal psychologist and police consultant Dr Herbert's vain efforts to track him down. This extremely stressful situation is beginning to take its toll on the good doctor's marriage with the beautiful Marzia, who is worried sick, seemingly unable to care for his needs. Is Herbert holding in terrible and corrosive emotions? Who can put an end to the unstoppable serial killer's horrific murder spree? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Mickey Hargitay, as the sex maniac doctor, makes Bluebeard look like Mary Poppins! See more »


Mystery | Thriller | War


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Herbert Lyutak: Enough, Herbert! You are a hyena, hyena!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The American Blue Underground DVD offers two distinctly different versions of the film. The full-length Italian version runs 102 minutes. The shorter American version runs 85 minutes. It begins and ends with scenes set in Vietnam with Mickey Hargitay as a wounded soldier and Rita Calderoni as a helicopter nurse. This version also features an extra killing and a different denouement. See more »


Referenced in Paura: Lucio Fulci Remembered - Volume 1 (2008) See more »

User Reviews

4 June 2006 | by Red-BarracudaSee all my reviews

This is a somewhat crazed and depraved giallo. The Anchor Bay DVD contains both the international and the American versions of the film. Both are very different. The U.S. version has a Vietnam War framing device similar to that used in Jacob's Ladder almost 20 years later. It also contains two more murders and is slightly more coherent than the international version, despite being about 20 minutes shorter. But both versions of Delirium are, well, delirious.

The film concerns a homicidal doctor who is a serial murderer of young women. Just when he starts to be questioned by police for his involvement in the killings another maniac starts a murdering spree that confuses the issue.

The whodunit aspect of this movie is a little obvious. So the mystery element is less important. Instead, the film works best as a demented series of shock scenes, all strung together by a loose plot. The editing is not very good but it adds a bit to the haphazard nature of the film as we are jerked around from scene to scene. The music score by Gianfranco Reverberi is very effective in sustaining the delirious atmosphere.

This is a very sexually explicit giallo. There is a multitude of female full-frontal nudity on display. The murder scenes are often pretty misogynistic, not something uncommon to the genre, but a little more extreme here than normal. There are also some well shot S&M dream sequences that feature writhing naked women! The plot is a little over-convoluted. Once again, this is a common giallo feature but, again, more-so here than normal. It can be quite difficult to follow the narrative as the story is all over the place. This fact is made even more apparent when watching both versions of the movie, you will see that scenes are ordered quite differently.

Overall, this giallo movie is weak on narrative but compensates for that with, well, excess. The effect is a film that is true to it's title. It really is delirious.

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Release Date:

5 July 1972 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Death at the Villa See more »

Filming Locations:

Rome, Lazio, Italy

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (re-edited American) | (video)

Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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