People seem to miss the point of this film (by miles judging by the other reviews). It's a classic study of the suffering, mental self-torture and delusions that drive people to become killers. As Frank Zito, a powerhouse performance from the late Joe Spinell is central to the plot as we see him agonise over his actions and his feelings toward his victims. His hatred of women stems for his childhood treatment at the hands of an abusive mother, so although he desires women, he turns violent the moment they challenge him. He falls for beautiful Anna D'Antoni (Caroline Munroe), and adopts a surprisingly urbane persona to attract her, all the while continuing with his nightly 'hobbies', decorating the female mannequins in his room with the scalps of his victims (although years before Jeffrey Dahmer, this always puts me in mind of his apartment and the 'shrine' he wanted to build). If you've ever read anything about killers like Dahmer, Peter Kurten & Dennis Nielsen, who all lived with the bodies/body parts of their victims, and wondered how they could do that - this is the film to watch. FX guru Tom Savini has in a small role as a guy in the car with his girl, as well as handling the effects for the film (Savini literally blew his own head off, as he wielded the rifle for the gag!) Although executive producer of many films, it's a shame Bill Lustig doesn't still direct, but at least he's making sure we all get to see great cult horror with his DVD distribution label, Blue Underground - go Bill!!
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