6.1/10
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122 user 79 critic

The Prowler (1981)

An unknown killer, clad in World War II U.S. Army fatigues, stalks a small New Jersey town bent on reliving a 35 year-old double murder by focusing on a group of college kids holding an annual Spring Dance.

Director:

Joseph Zito

Writers:

Glenn Leopold, Neal Barbera (as Neal F. Barbera) | 4 more credits »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vicky Dawson ... Pam MacDonald
Christopher Goutman ... Mark London
Lawrence Tierney ... Major Chatham
Farley Granger ... Sheriff George Fraser
Cindy Weintraub ... Lisa
Lisa Dunsheath ... Sherry
David Sederholm ... Carl
Bill Nunnery ... Hotel Clerk
Thom Bray ... Ben
Diane Rode Diane Rode ... Sally
Bryan Englund Bryan Englund ... Paul
Donna Davis Donna Davis ... Miss Allison
Carleton Carpenter ... 1945 M.C
Joy Glaccum ... Francis Rosemary Chatham
Timothy Wahrer Timothy Wahrer ... Roy
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Storyline

The film begins with the return home of a wwII veteran who was the recipient of a "Dear John Letter". After swiftly dispatching a courting couple in a Gazebo we leap to present day where a college celebration becomes the hunting ground for a uniform clad killer. Written by Barry Wall <Barry@Mage.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

the film that shocked America! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 November 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pitchfork Massacre See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Graduation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Released internationally as "Rosemary's Killer". See more »

Goofs

At the end of the movie, Pam returns to her dorm room and sees the bathroom door slightly ajar. Then, there's an angle from inside the bathroom looking out at her, and the door is all the way open. Then, the angle changes back to her heading to the bathroom and the door is only slightly ajar again. See more »

Quotes

Roy: Come on, kid, don't play hard to get. What about New Year's Eve?
Francis Rosemary Chatham: Well, that was different. I couldn't help myself.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The color of the closing credits turns from blood red to yellow. See more »

Alternate Versions

The British cinema release, known under the title Rosemary's Killer, was heavily cut by the BBFC with edits to the pitchfork murder, shots of throat and head stabbings, and heavy cuts to the shower murder. The Greek release also carries this title and is uncut. The BBFC cuts were fully waived for the 2007 Optimum DVD release which retains the original cinema title. See more »

Connections

Featured in Scream: The Inside Story (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

View Through a Tear
Composed and Performed by 'Nowhere Fast' (uncredited)
Courtesy of Trust Me Music, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Its Got Guts Going for It
6 August 2015 | by zimmyfan66See all my reviews

"The Prowler" has all the 80s slasher narrative clichés. There's the lackluster love interest, there are the mindless teenagers, the horny exhibitionist girls, and the contrived killings which exist only to showcase the use of a particular weapon. It might for this reason seem like a film to pass over as yet one more negligible film in the pile of giant refuse that is the slasher film catalog. And I wouldn't blame you for feeling that way. All that "The Prowler" has going for it, all that is distinguishable, by most reviewers' estimations, is its ultra-realistic gore effects by the legendary Tom Savini. In fact, Quentin Tarantino himself theorizes that someone had to have gotten a blowjob in order for this film to get released. He's not far off. One can easily imagine not only the producers but the director and the crew themselves utterly shocked by the realism of the carnage. Had the acting and script been worthy of them, the effects might have propelled "The Prowler" into notoriety as one of the more legitimately frightening films in the slasher film catalog. Even the cinematography itself is surprisingly good and goes a long way at evoking the right mood. The technical aspects are therefore covered. However, in the areas where it matters most, "The Prowler" is ultimately a let-down. The characters are wooden and act in one-dimensional ways. The actors themselves seem eager not to play their characters but to await the box office returns. For this reason, it stands out merely as a curiosity and a testament to Tom Savini's abilities, far ahead of their time as they were.


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