Maniac (Elijah Wood and Franck Khalfoun in person!)

In recent years, no one has been making horror films with the combination of brutality and finesse quite like the French — and now, gorehounds can rejoice that the job of remaking Maniac, William Lustig’s 1980 beautifully repulsive masterpiece, was taken on by the gallic duo of Alejandra Aja and Grégory Lavasseur (The Hills Have Eyes, Piranha). No stranger to filmic exercices (their fierce debut Haute Tension was an experiment in how long one could sustain a single suspense scene), Aja and Lavsseur team with director Franck Khalfoun to create the rare occurrence of a full-length “POV” film (like Lady In The Lake, or Enter The Void), shooting all the action from the killer’s sick, sick eyes. Or should we say beautiful blue ones? Because, for the second time (the first being Sin City), Elijah Wood has been insightfully cast against type as a psychopath — showing how that famous gaze can go from mesmerizing to unnerving with just a shift of the light, and a little change of context. With a killer synth score by the improbably named “Rob”, and a stylish perfection that borders on the fetishistic, the new Maniac is a slick piece of sleaze sure to please the most hardcore of scumlovers — like us. Elijah Wood and director Franck Khalfoun will be here in person for a Q&A after the film!
Dir. Franck Khalfoun, 2012, HD presentation, 90 min.

Watch the trailer for “Maniac”!
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