Maniac movie poster
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Maniac
Maniac movie poster

Maniac Movie Review

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Maniac is a fucked up movie. In fact, it's one of the most disturbing movies I've ever watched. It's also quite good.

Elijah Wood stars as Frank, a sadistic serial killer who suffers from a variety of problems, including the urge to scalp pretty young woman to adorn his mannequin collection with real hair, because real hair is always better than fake hair.

What's disturbing about Maniac is that nearly the entire movie is viewed through Frank's eyes. Literally. We watch, and listen, as Frank stalks a young woman walking home from a bar. We hear his excitement when he cuts the scalp from his victims. We sense his discomfort when around other people. The movie, directed by Franck Khalfoun and written by Alexandre Aja and Gregory Levasseur, gets into the mind of a killer like few films have.

Maniac, of course, is not for everyone. It's not for most people. Women, for instance. Maniac isn't necessarily realistic, but the situations that lead to Frank's murders - a woman walking home, another crossing the street at the wrong time, yet another befriending the wrong guy - all could happen oh so easily in real life. It's this element that makes Maniac so creepy and unsettling.

Maniac is not a movie I intend to ever watch again, but that doesn't mean it isn't worth a single viewing. Disturbing, creepy, gory, unsettling and fucked up, Maniac is the kind of horror movie that gets under your skin.

Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.

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