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Manhattan Baby
Il Malocchio / Evil Eye / Evil Eye of the Dead / The Possessed

Italy 1982
produced by
Fabrizio de Angelis for Fulvia Film
directed by Lucio Fulci
starring Christopher Connelly, Martha Taylor, Brigitta Boccoli, Giovanni Frezza, Cinzia de Ponti, Cosimo Cinieri (as Laurence Welles), Andrea Bosic, Carlo De Mejo, Enzo Marino Bellanich, Mario Moretti, Lucio Fulci, Tonino Pulci, Martin Sorrentino, Laura Lenzi
written by Dardano Sacchetti, Elisa Briganti, music by Fabio Frizzi

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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When in Egypt with her egyptologist dad George (Christopher Connelly) and her reporter mum Emely (Marthy Taylor), an old woman hands 9 year-old Suzy (Brigitta Boccoli) an amulet, which seems to contain something like pure evil or stuff.

Back in Manhattan, the amulet soon starts zapping away people, including Suzy's au pair (Cinzia de Ponti), and Suzy seems to start to use astral projections to kill people who are after her secret, but eventually she also grows incredibly weak and needs medical care - but the doctors don't know what to make of it, especially when an x-ray shows a snake inside her body. Good thing that George and Emily somehow get in touch with an antiquedealer (Cosimo Cinieri) who's also a parapsychologist or something, and who in the end absorbs the evil that possesses her into himself. Then he is eaten up by the stuffed birds in his shop that actually come to life. George though throws the evil amulet into the river ... but soon enough, back in Egypt, the amulet is handed to another 9 year-old girl ...

 

Compared to most other Lucio Fulci-films of its time, Manhattan Baby boasts amazing production values: Extensive outside shooting was done in both Egypt and Manhattan (and not just for location shots but with actors and everything), all the sets look convincing and in fact quite polished, the special effects are pretty good, and the camerawork glossy, to say the least. Unfortunately this is where the good news ends, because the script of Manhattan Baby, a clumsy Exorcist rip-off, is a total desaster. As a whole the film just fails to make sense, and consequently the suspense scenes uniformly fail to work. On top of that, the soundtrack by Fabio Frizzi (maybe the worst soundtrack that ever graced a Lucio Fulci film) destroys every attempt at creating a proper atmosphere and the film by and large lacks shock and gore scenes one has come to expect from Lucio Fulci in the early 1980's, and the film just doesn't seem to go anywhere at all ... which is really a pity, because the film looks much better than any other of Fulci's films.

 

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
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tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
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Tales to Chill
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the new anthology by
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Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD