Maniac

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Maniac

Franck Khalfoun (2012)

85min
18 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
While nowhere near as sleazy or depressing as the 1980 original, director Franck Khalfoun's update treads the same lurid exploitation path to emerge as an equally sick but far slicker hardcore slasher. Clearly meant to resemble Ted Bundy, a scarcely believable Elijah Wood plays the deranged psycho who was subject to years of motherly abuse and now vents his rage on the female population of downtown Los Angeles, killing them and placing their scalps on dummies in his mannequin store. Not that you see the wild-eyed Wood much, because the gimmick here is that the stalking is done from his point of view, so you only glimpse him in shop windows, mirrors and CCTV footage. It's a remarkable technical challenge that Khalfoun cleverly pulls off, and this aesthetic choice, which also references everything from Peeping Tom to Taxi Driver, goes a long way to refreshing all the gory stabbings and seedy heavy-breathing.

Summary

A shy mannequin store owner leads a double life as a serial killer who scalps his victims and uses the hair to decorate his dummies. An artist asks him for help with a project and a friendship develops, but the relationship only feeds his desire to kill. Horror filmed entirely from the murderer's point of view, starring Elijah Wood and Nora Arnezeder.

Cast & Crew

Frank Zito Elijah Wood
Anna Nora Arnezeder
Jessica Genevieve Alexandra
Rita Jan Broberg
Lucie 86 Megan Duffy
Frank's mother America Olivo
Judy Liane Balaban
Jason Sammi Rotibi
Director Franck Khalfoun
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: MetrodomeGuidance: Violence, swearing, sex scenes, nudity, drug abuse.Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 15 Mar 2013
Drama