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Lady Stay Dead (1981)

A Young woman is looking after her sister's house, unaware that her sister and neighbor have been murdered by their handyman who also happens to be a serial killer.


Terry Bourke


Terry Bourke
1 win. See more awards »


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Cast overview:
Chard Hayward ... Gordon / Handyman-Killer
Louise Howitt Louise Howitt ... Jenny / Marie's sister
Deborah Coulls Deborah Coulls ... Marie / Jenny's sister
Roger Ward ... Officer Clyde Collings
Les Foxcroft Les Foxcroft ... Billy Shepherd
James Elliott James Elliott ... Patrolman Rex Dunbar
Brian Hinzlewood Brian Hinzlewood ... TV Director (as Brian Hinlsewood)
George Murray George Murray ... Businessman / Client
Barry Donnelly Barry Donnelly ... Security Man at Crash
James Moss James Moss ... Security Man at Crash
Allen Scholz Allen Scholz ... Chauffer


Gordon (Chard Hayward) works as a handyman at the Rocky Beach Motel. He proceeds to spy on singer and actress Marie Coleby (Deborah Coulls), who is bad tempered, bossy and constantly barks orders at and berates him all day. Later that day, when she packs up to drive to the airport to pick up her sister, Jenny (Louise Howitt), he intrudes on, and rapes her. When she bites and calls him an animal, he drowns her in her fish tank in a fit of rage. While trying to hide her body in a garbage bag, her neighbor Billy Sheperd (Les Foxcroft) catches him in the act and is also killed by Gordon, who also poisons Billy's dog. Later, Jenny is driven home from the airport and finds the house empty. She later finds her jewels of her necklace in the fish tank and even finds Billy's dog floating in the water at the beach. She tries to tell Billy but sees his body lying on the couch and mistakes him for merely napping. She tries making a few phone calls to find her sister and even tries calling Billy ... Written by lament

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The trick is to stay alive!


Drama | Horror | Thriller


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Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

10 September 1981 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Die Nacht der Apocalypse See more »


Box Office


AUD 610,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



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Did You Know?


Did not receive a cinema release in its native Australia, it went straight to home video. See more »


References Maniac (1980) See more »


The Four Seasons
Written by Antonio Vivaldi
Arranged by Bob Young
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User Reviews

Good solid drama rides high on plot, some sex and violence aplus
5 February 2013 | by PeterMitchell-506-564364See all my reviews

Mind tipped Handyman, Hayward who gets treated look one of his tools, by a successful bitchy model- Coulls from The Restless Years finally snaps, raping and killing her. A lot of us guys have been there too. How the film got this title, I'm buggered if I know. Coulls's character would chafe a lot of guys. Hayward, playing the reverse of his in control and sexually alluring character norms, is almost a childlike character, here, ill treated by Coulls, not even being allowed to come into her house. When verbally striking back, telling her what it feels like to be one of her tools, she just abusing him more, as if what he said, went in one ear and out the other. Prior to Coulls getting it, when entrapped in the house I liked, as well as seeing her nude. It was great here to really see Hayward, return forth, his own brand of retribution towards her, that is funny in part too. But our disturbed Chard had developed a sexual fascination for her, an obsession, that has eventually led to her demise. He so much obsesses with her, he replaces her with a mannequin at the start. Hysterical, especially played against a mellow soundtrack I liked. Getting rid of Coulls's body is only the start of his problems. Big sister is in town for a visit, so Chard must play the part of the stable minded handyman, where other complications develop, the biggest, when the cops finally arrive on the scene where it's a standoff between them and Hayward. The sister, out of harms way at this stage, even insults the cop, as not taken psycho Hayward, as seriously as he should. This is a good situation plotted movie just like Bourke's "Brothers", with some sick violence, but it's a good watch, one reason for Coulls's over the top acting, where in contrast, this is one of Hayward's best performances.

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