Search - Maniac (Ws Spec) on DVD

Maniac (Ws Spec)
Ws Spec
Actors: Joe Spinell, Caroline Munro, Abigail Clayton, Kelly Piper, Rita Montone
Director: William Lustig
Genres: Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense
UR     1997     1hr 27min


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Movie Details

Actors: Joe Spinell, Caroline Munro, Abigail Clayton, Kelly Piper, Rita Montone
Director: William Lustig
Creators: Joe Spinell, William Lustig, Andrew W. Garroni, John Packard, Judd Hamilton, C.A. Rosenberg
Genres: Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Elite
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Letterboxed
DVD Release Date: 12/09/1997
Original Release Date: 01/01/1980
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1980
Release Year: 1997
Run Time: 1hr 27min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Letterboxed
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 5
MPAA Rating: Unrated
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Movie Reviews

4 Stars For Shocking Me
Amy Lynn | Pennsylvania United States | 10/18/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Im not easily shocked or impressed with most horror films. Very few come to mind where it disturbs me or has a realistic feeling to it. This is definetly a film that will leave you thinking/- The main reason being the main character Frank Zito aka Joe Spinell plays the most realistic psycho/deranged person ive ever seen on film. The whole time i was thinking is this guy really insane? Either this guy is a genius actor or hes really nuts. Thats how real he is in this role. His presance will creep you out. Hes the biggest weirdo Ive ever seen on film. Hes worse than any monster, supernatural being, horror villain because hes so real and gritty. You dont want to think about it but you know that somewhere out there- people like this exist...

The story focuses on frank the serial killer and his killings and insanity. He calmly stalks his pray through the streets of NYC. I dont know how he manages to fool some of the people in this film but he does. They treat him like a normal guy until he trys to kill them when they least expect it.

Some of the scenes are grusome, but they will keep you on the edge of your seat. You will be able to put yourself in both franks shoes and feel the victims terror as she is stalked and hides from Frank... Especially the subway bathroom scene. Thats an intense scene. Frank keeps on killing till the end when his own demons finally come back to haunt him.

Any horror fan should have this in their collection. I can see why it was banned in germany and england. They were probably scared of it, considering how realistic it was.

As for this film shocking me- it did somewhat- for the realism. and the acting did impress me."
Great original storyline and special effects
Amy Lynn | 11/09/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)

"If unrelenting scenes of carnage, compliments of a psychotic sexual deviant is your cup of tea, then this movie is for you. The late Joe Spinell does an excellent job as our deeply disturbed title character, and the special FX are convincing even by today's standards. The shotgun scene left me speechless and is a MUST for all lovers of blood & gore. The ending was kind of strange, But unlike Jason or Freddie, there are actually people like this out there. This movie ranks in the top 5 most gorriest films I've seen. And as with all movies I recommend, Make sure you have the widescreen, unedited director's cut or you will miss some scenes."
Just sick or a horror masterpiece?
Amy Lynn | 11/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"There are a number of people who find this film to be nothing more than a pointless and unnecessarily gruesome study in pathological and psychotic behaviour. I cannot agree with this opinion.Although a very tough experience, the viewing of this film reveals in some depth the tortured mind of a pathetic Vietnam veteran (also a victim of child abuse) who is driven by his inner demons to slaughter various women in NYC in a psychotic attempt to revive the spirit of his dead mother.It is a profoundly disturbing film.Joe Spinell gives a remarkable performance as the demented killer. His verbal ramblings are profoundly unnerving. (Not to mention the hideous murders.) He manages to demonstrate the de-personalized actions of an insane "maniac" all too convincingly.The direction is very good as well. Some very fine camera work.It is interesting to note the incorporation of some themes of Mario Bava's "giallo" thrillers in this film. For example, consider the "dollhouse" effect of the main protaganist's grotesque apartment and compare this to the secret "bridal room" in Bava's HATCHET FOR A HONEYMOON. (Lustig and Spinell apparently enjoyed watching "banned" foreign horror movies in the old "grindhouse" cinemas on 42nd.)The print offered by the new ANCHOR BAY DVD is an improvement over that of the old ELITE version. The colours are sharper and the night exterior scenes (notably that concerning the gruesome murder of the Tom Savani character and his "date") are not as murky.Some good extras as well.As a horror film, MANIAC comes close to being a masterpiece."
The most cruel and unapolegetic slasher film ever....
TheHillsHaveEyes13 | Nashville, TN | 02/27/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Finally at long last Joe Spinnel's clasic tale of a deranged serial killer has finally been released in a worthy form.Being that many movies have used this title I must explain that this one is not only the real deal but the most vile of the pack. It is a extremely creepy low budget gore flick with absoloutely no moral perspective, So much so that even its own makeup artist wanted to be removed from its credits. Tom Savini, who would later become famous for his award winning FX as well as acting and directing many later horror films, Brings to the table some of the most realistic FX in his career and is one of the many highlights in this classic horror film. Like it is in many real life serial killer cases, we have the late Joe Spinnel, who potrays the serial killer Frank Zito, a loner with no social grace or personality. Frank is severely mentally disturbed as a result of the emotional and physical abuse he suffered as a child at the hands of his prostitute mother. The murder scenes in this movie are extremely cruel and graphic in nature so I must warn you that this film is defenitely not for everybody. Most casual horror fans tend to wretch at this film and see it as nothing more than a seedy slasher flick that has a very anti-woman message, but in my opinion it is much more than that. It is a potrayal of one of society's worst monsters, monsters who often walk around our every day world going unnoticed.So in conclusion, if you are a die-hard horror fan and love gruesome effects, then I highly suggest you purchase this dvd. Out of all the DVD's that Anchor Bay has released, this would have to be the cream of the crop, boasting a plethora of special features, and a heartfelt tribute to the late Joe Spinnel."