Sure Lucio Fulci has made better and even more violent movies, yet I dug his 1982 giallo style slasher film The New York Ripper. Considering Son of Sam and other serial killers had already happened, a movie about a crazed murderer haunting the city streets was not too outrageous. What I liked best about the killer was that he quacks like a duck the entire movie, a creepy device that Fulci uses to great effect. Also the kills are brutal and sexual, as the killer hates his victims. This is not a movie for the faint of heart, and it’s trashy nature adds to the picture’s grindhouse feel. Hence The New York Ripper being labeled a “Video Nasty,” banned in some countries as a result.
Fred Williams (a grizzled Jack Hedley) is the right main character for this flick, and unfortunately I guessed the killer although the film reveals him early on if one is paying attention. I found a DVD uncensored copy of this film at my local Half-Price Books, and I used it to kick off my Halloween viewing last year. What a flick to start with, and I’ll never hear duck sounds the same way again.