Elijah Wood is a creepy Maniac in the latest trailer for the horror remake
When it was announced that Elijah Wood was starring in a remake of the 1980 cult classic MANIAC, I was skeptical. The original, starring Joe Spinell, was directed by William Lustig (MANIAC COP) and remains one of my favorite grindhouse movies. It even features the iconic shot of Tom Savini's head exploding in a shotgun blast. When Alexandre Aja's name was attached as screenwriter/producer, I gained some hope for a gritty, violent update on the movie.
After premiering at Sundance this year, MANIAC has begun to put together more official trailers than what we have seen and this latest trailer cements this as a movie I must see. Wood looks absolutely disturbing as the titular maniac as he stalks women through New York City. Director Franck Khalfoun uses a first person perspective to put us inside the character's head, an unsettling technique that does the trick in the trailer.
Just when the streets seemed safe, a serial killer with a fetish for scalps is back and on the hunt. Frank (Elijah Wood) is the withdrawn owner of a mannequin store, but his life changes when young artist Anna (Nora Arnezeder) appears asking for his help with her new exhibition. As their friendship develops and Frank's obsession escalates, it becomes clear that she has unleashed a long-repressed compulsion to stalk and kill. A 21st century Jack the Ripper set in present day L.A., Franck Khalfoun's MANIAC, produced by Alexandre Aja (THE HILLS HAVE EYES, HAUTE TENSION), and composed by Rob of the band "Phoenix", is a re-boot of the William Lustig cult film considered by many to be the most suspensseful slasher movie ever made - an intimate, visually daring, psychologically complex and projoundly horrific trip into the downward spiralling nightmare of a killer and his victims.
Wood has worked steadily since THE LORD OF THE RINGS and plays a less creepy weirdo on the bizarre FX series WILFRED. MANIAC is definitely not a film for the masses and will likely make little impact in theaters but it looks like one hell of a horror movie to check out late one night with some friends or a date.
IFC will premiere MANIAC in theaters and VOD on June 21, 2013.