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Maniac [DVD]

Joe Spinell , Caroline Munro , William Lustig    Suitable for 18 years and over   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
Price: £7.64 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Joe Spinell, Caroline Munro, Abigail Clayton, Kelly Piper, Rita Montone
  • Directors: William Lustig
  • Writers: Joe Spinell, C.A. Rosenberg
  • Producers: Joe Spinell, William Lustig, Andrew W. Garroni, John Packard, Judd Hamilton
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Anchor Bay
  • DVD Release Date: 29 July 2002
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000068OXB
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 74,923 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

Frank (Joe Spinell) is a deranged maniac who spends his days having imaginary conversations with his dead mother and slaughtering various young women, whose scalps he then displays on the mannequins which he takes to bed with him. Frank's idea is that this unusual technique will eventually help him restore his mother back to her corporal form. So when beautiful photographer Ann D'Antoni (Caroline Munro) catches his eye, Frank sets to work once again, placing his knife-wielding insanity in the service of his ever-loving mum.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Effective shocker. But is it entertainment? 7 Nov 2005
Bill Lustig coaxed a lifetime-great performance from Joe Spinell in the compelling, but thoroughly unpleasant gore-fest that is Maniac.
Whilst the blood 'n guts in a Romero or Fulcio horror is so OTT as to provide comedy value as well as shocks, the gore in Maniac feels so real (courtesy of Tom Savini in expert form) as to make the viewer feel uncomfortably like a guilty voyeur at the scene of something exceedingly nasty.

As an insight into a profoundly troubled mind and the shocking consequences of horrific childhood abuse (more hinted at than explained), Maniac also works pretty well. It cleverly treds the fine line between the viewer understanding what has made Frank Zito (Spinell) into the monster he became, whilst never sympathising with the appalling acts he commits.
Somewhat surprisingly for a low-budget movie in the gore-fest/video nasty category, Maniac is rather well acted. Spinell himself is scarily believable. The actress (sorry not sure of her name) in the extended toilet scene gives one of the most convincing depictions of utter terror ever seen. Whilst it is perhaps a little far fetched that anyone could fall for the dubious charms of Frank Zito, Caroline Munro plays a blinder as the beautiful, talented (if somewhat naive) photographer.
So, in my humble opinion, it is the sheer realism and honesty of Maniac that makes it work. On the occasions when it descends into more a supernatural horror style (including one scene in the cemetary ripped unashamedly from Carrie, and the final scene with the mannequins) its potency becomes diluted.
Enough quibling though. Fans of the genre will surely acknowledge Maniac as a very effective and truly disturbing horror movie.
The DVD is reasonably well-equipped.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Slasher 23 May 2011
This review relates to the imported Region 2 edition. This edition is uncut. As slasher films go this is probably on the more depressing side. AWE have done a great job adding DTS sound and cleaned the picture up as much as possible. Avoid the UK release as it is trimmed by about 1 minute. Well worth a watch!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars prepare yourself 6 Nov 2003
WOW! this is quite a movie. incredibly graphic and violent, this film takes the serial killing genre to the limits, and does it brilliantly. Right from the opening killing you know this film isnt for the light-hearted. The murder scenes are dramatic and very well filmed in order to stir fear in the audience, which they certainly do. 3 of my friends wouldnt carry on watching after the shotgun/car scene!
The tension that is built is also excellent, In my opinion the subway scene is one of if not the best build up to a murder in any film - cliqued but brilliant none-the-less.
The murderer is characterised well. The film follows his perverse mind, confusion and turmoil in a chilling way.
Brilliant film, be warned - thick-skinned adults only.
a fiver says it will scare the living §&$! outta u!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully Sick 10 Oct 2007
This is a exellent film, well made , good effects and very "Twisted" script.
Not for the faint-hearted.
Once banned in the "Video-Nasty" scares of the 70/80s.
WARNING THIS IS A REGION 1 DVD it will only play on multi.region DVD, other wise you will either get nothing or a black and white picture {this needs to be seen in color}.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars he's a maniac maniac that's for sure! 25 May 2013
Years of abuse have turned Frank Zito in a psychotic killer who scalps his victims and puts his trophies on showroom mannequins.

Maniac is, metaphorically speaking, amongst the darkest American horror movies ever made and certainly the bleakest film of the early slasher cycle. Joe Spinell gives a more nuanced performance as Frank than most of the film's many detractors have ever acknowledged and William Lustig's direction is very stylish. The emphasis is on claustrophobia and dread. Frank's attacks are brutal and graphic. The murder of a nurse in the subway stands out and is very tense.

Though coming out of the Slasher boom, Maniac in some ways seems more akin to Taxi Driver than a Halloween. It is scuzzy,down beat and filled with ugly menace, rather than being fluid, elegant and suspense driven. Reflective of a New York that also produced Driller Killer and Don't Go In The House. The relationship between Caroline Munro and Joe Spinell is often seen as unrealistic, but it tends to be forgotten that Frank is actually fairly cultured and urbane. Again, it is worth comparing Maniac with Taxi Driver. In that film Cybill Shepperd, a sophisticated political PR, is in a relationship with DeNiro's Travis Bickle, a not too bright gun fanatic who takes his dates to XXX rated movies! Munro and Spinell in fact had enough natural chemistry to work together on The Last Horror Movie a year so later. The point is that the viewer is seeing the repellent side of Frank. Munro is not.

The most celebrated or reviled, take your pick, feature of Maniac are it's very nasty and visceral gore scenes. Tom Savini pulled out all the stops and delivered make up effects that rank amongst his best work.

Interestingly, the Micheal Sembello song "Maniac" was written for this film and reworked for Flashdance.

The Double Disc version gives you the uncut film, a documentary about Spinell, interviews and a lot of language options.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy the region 1 version .... 20 Aug 2010
By jman jr
It is UNCUT.

Us poor saps in the UK are missing 5 mins ...
also NO extras whatsoever!!!!

I have just finished watching this for the first time.
(Glad I went for the projector!)

and I am completly blown away!!!

I'm enjoying watching a number of films from this era at the moment and this one really stands out for me.

The gore effects are very well done (even on this UK version) -

but (and this is unusual for the genre )
I found the movie had depth...
Joe Spinell gives an outstanding performance.

It's a deffo a classic in it's own play ground and is worth a 100 toolbox murders , mutilators, dead end streets etc

Actually -I rather think this is nearer to Henry Portrait of a serial killer than the above mentioned films.
It's a charactor study.

Buy this film- but buy the Region 1 version...
the one that has 5mins extra - UNCUT- Lots of extras - and dosen't hide the killers knife on it's cover!!!

Going to order my copy right now.

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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Maniac crap!
Revolting horror movie,gory sadistic murders, bad acting,laughable plot,many people think this a classic.Dont waste your money.TOTAL HORSE. _ _ _ _ !
Published 3 months ago by Sajaad Ahmed Najeeb
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing film
The original Maniac for some reason was never one of the video nasties although it is much better than at least half the films from the list. Read more
Published 5 months ago by bees8932
5.0 out of 5 stars Wig Wam Bam!
Frank Zito is completely mental and goes around murdering women by neon light, on the sleazy streets of New York, before going home and adorning his 'girlfriend's' (mannequins)... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Arch Stanton
3.0 out of 5 stars It's Ok
Cant believe that this is still uncut (according to some reviews on here), Hostel 2 where the girl is hung upside down is far worse! Read more
Published 8 months ago by Mazz71
3.0 out of 5 stars Still looking a head!
This is still cut!

The scene in the subway is edited by at least three minutes.
Now I have fallen out with online reviewer's over this. Read more
Published 8 months ago by scribe
2.0 out of 5 stars rude both visually and script wise
What's the concept behind that? That a big man who was traumatized as a child since his mother was was a slut, automatically becomes a twisted maniac killer? So bloody american. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Elleppi
Published 15 months ago by D.POWELL
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and haunting
Maniac is often overlooked, but as a horror fan of the last thirty years I have no qualms in putting this movie in my all time top ten list. Read more
Published on 5 Jan 2012 by Colonel Decker
5.0 out of 5 stars When less was more...(Maniac Blu Ray)
And yes,it's reg 0,Blue Underground release,along with so many classics they(and increasingly other labels)are releasing BRs and DVDs reg 0,it's worth double checking with seller... Read more
Published on 13 Aug 2011 by S Walker
2.0 out of 5 stars Stick to the dvd.
Ok, just got maniac on blu-ray. I'm not going to go over the plot suffice to say its a great little movie unfairly banned in this country and certainly worth watching. Read more
Published on 30 Jun 2011 by Mr. K. Arts
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