“You wanna meet me someplace?” “Where?” “The back seat.” (flutters eyebrows) All things considered, it might have been a good idea to meet someplace else. Join your faithful Grue Crew – Bill Mulligan, Chad Hunt, Crystal Cleveland, and Jeff Mohr – as they dare to step into the world of Maniac (1980).
Decades of Horror 1980s
Episode 164 – Maniac (1980)
A psychotic man, troubled by his childhood abuse, loose in New York City, kills young women and takes their scalps as his trophies. Will he find the perfect woman in a photographer, and end his killing spree?IMDb
- Director: William Lustig
- Writers: C.A. Rosenberg, Joe Spinell
- Music: Jay Chattaway
- Makeup Department:
- Joe Spinell as Frank Zito
- Caroline Munro as Anna D’Antoni
- Gail Lawrence (Abigail Clayton) as Rita
- Kelly Piper as Nurse
- Rita Montone as Hooker
- Tom Savini as Disco boy
- Hyla Marrow as Disco girl
- James L. Brewster as Beach boy
- Linda Lee Walter as Beach girl
- Tracie Evans as Street hooker
- Sharon Mitchell as Nurse #2
- Carol Henry as Deadbeat
- Nelia Bacmeister as Carmen Zito
- Louis Jawitz as Art director
- Denise Spagnuolo as Denise
- Billy Spagnuolo as Billy
- Frank Pesce as TV reporter
- William Lustig as Hotel manager
Your Decades of Horror 1980s Grue-Crew takes a walk on the seedy side of New York with William Lustig’s Maniac, they’re second Lustig-directed, Maniac-titled film in a row. This one is co-writer and lead actor Joe Spinell’s baby, but it wouldn’t be near the film it is without Caroline Munro and the special effects magic of Tom Savini. Crystal liked Maniac but thought the story was a little thin. Ever the special effects maven, this one is all about Tom Savini’s work for Chad. Jeff digs into the controversy, fueled by Gene Siskel’s theater walkout, surrounding Maniac’s release. For Bill, Caroline Munro is always a star attraction, but he also appreciates Spinell’s performance, Lustig’s direction, and of course, Savini’s work.
Maniac is currently available to stream on Amazon Prime and Shudder, both as a stand-alone and with the Joe Bob Briggs treatment (which includes a visit from Tom Savini). It’s also available on Blu-ray Blue Underground. So what are you waiting for? Add Maniac to your October horror film watchlist!
Every two weeks, Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1980s podcast will cover another horror film from the 1980s. The next episode will be dedicated to Motel Hell (1980), another Decades of Horror 1980s double tap.
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