With the recent remake of “Maniac” now hitting the festival circuit and the actual release date getting closer I thought I would show my excitement for the cult classic reboot by listing ten killer flicks that are greatly under appreciated. These are films that many may not have seen or forget about over the years but deserve a little more love from us all.
1. Carnival Of Blood (1970)
Directed by Leonard Kirtman and starring Burt Young, Earle Edgerton, Judith Resnick, and Martin Bardsky. “Carnival Of Blood” is about a psychopathic killer who uses the carousel ride at a carnival to pick his victims, whom he then murders and dismembers.
2. City In Panic (1986)
Directed by Robert Bouvier and stars David Adamson, Lee Ann Nestegard and Ed Chester. “City In Panic is about a serial killer who stalks homosexuals, and leaves an “M” carved on their skin. Late night radio host Dave Miller is asked by police to challenge the maniac by provoking him to call in to the radio show.
3. Dr. Giggles (1992)
Directed by Manny Coto and stars Larry Drake, Holly Marie Combs and Cliff De Young. “Dr. Giggles” is about the psychopathic son of a mass-murdering doctor, who escapes from his mental institution to seek revenge on the town where his father was caught. The giggling doctor kills his victims with a surgical theme. His goal being to give one of the town folk a heart transplant.
4. Fade To Black (1980)
Directed by Vernon Zimmerman and starring Dennis Christopher, Tim Thomerson and Gwynne Gilford. “Fade To Black” is about a shy, lonely, film geek who goes on a killing spree against those who bully and browbeat him, while at the same time, he stalks his idol; a Marilyn Monroe look-alike.
5. Deranged (1974)
Directed by Jeff Gillen and Alan Ormsby; starring Robert Warner, Roberts Blossom, Cosette Lee, Micki Moore, and Leslie Carlson. “Deranged” is based on Ed Gein a deranged rural farmer becomes a grave robber and murderer after the death of his possessive mother whom he keeps her corpse, among others, as his companions in his decaying farmhouse.
6. Hands Of The Ripper (1971)
Directed by Peter Sasdy and starring Eric Porter, Angharad Rees, Jane Merrow, and Keith Bell. “Hands Of The Ripper” tells the story of Jack The Rippers daughter who witnesses the murder of her mother at her father’s hands. She then grows up and becomes possessed by the spirit of her serial father and goes on a murderous killing spree.
7. Lucker (1986)
Directed by Johan Vandewoestijne and starring Nick Van Suyt, Helga Vandevelde and Let Jotts. This Belgian exploitation film saw worldwide release in 2007 and tells the story of a serial killer who awakens from a coma and escapes from a mental hospital to kill a survivor of his slayings years ago, all the while stalking, terrifying, and killing women on the way.
8. Mikey (1992)
Directed by Dennis Demstir and starring Brian Bonsall, Josie Bissett and Ashley Laurence. “Mikey” is about a little boy whose original family dies accidently and he is sent from foster home to foster home because every family he is sent to has a series of unexplained incidents. Soon the truth of Mikey’s misfortune becomes frightfully clear.
9. Night School (1981)
Directed by Ken Hughes and stars Rachel Ward, Leonard Mann, Drew Snyder, and Joseph R. Sicari. “Night School” is about a Boston detective who investigates a series of decapitations of college coeds. The murders are committed by a helmet wearing leather clad serial killer.
10. Savage Weekend (1979)
Directed by David Paulsen and John Mason Kirby; starring Christopher Allport, Jim Doerr, David Gale, Devin Goldenberg, Marylin Hamlin, and Caitlin O’Heaney . “Savage Weekend” is about several couples who head upstate to the country to watch a boat being built. Unfortunately they are stalked by a murderer behind a ghoulish mask.