Directed by: Dwain Esper
Starring: William Woods, Horace B. Carpenter, Ted Edwards
Run Time: 51 Minutes
Format: 1.33:1 Full Frame
Unless you regularly do mushrooms and go to Lady Gaga concerts with your good friend Crispin Glover, then watching Maniac is guaranteed to be the weirdest experience you have ever had. Maniac starts conventionally enough, when a Vaudeville-impersonator-turned-lab-assistant-to-a-madscientist refuses his boss’ reasonable request that he shoot himself in the heart and offer his corpse as an experimental subject. After that, it starts to get strange. A disturbed patient who thinks he is the orangutan from Poe’s “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” is mistakenly given super-adrenaline (which evidently exists) causing him to give one of the most eccentric performances in the history of film. Meanwhile, the mad scientist’s next door neighbor is disturbed because one of his cats is missing from his cat ranch, where he harvests their fur after feeding their flesh to the rats (which he feeds to the next generation of cats, and so on.) After that, the offbeat aspects of Maniac really kick in.