Directed by the auteur behind the skin flicks Hot Honey and The Violation Of Claudia (and funded in part by the profits from those films), Maniac is a time-capsule that captures New York at its worst. This is not the gleaming city seen in the 2012 remake but a cesspool full of XXX movie houses, adult bookstores and other business run by people who work without a tie.
It’s the perfect setting for a grim, grimy movie about an overweight Vietnam veteran (played with bug-eyed abandon by Joe Spinell) who places the scalps of his female victims on his assembly on mannequins. After clothing a mannequin, he carries it over to his bed and starts talking to it, pretending it’s his dead mother.
Full of explicit mutilations (including an infamous exploding head), Maniac’s claim to fame is Tom Savini’s expert gore effects, most of which were cut from the UK home video release. The multi-region Blu-ray is uncut, so you can finally experience the movie the way its makers intended.