Horrorfest 2022 Presents: Manhattan Baby (1982, Lucio Fulci)


By the 1980s Lucio Fulci had decided to change up his style a bit, and the result is the pretty decent and somewhat entertaining Manhattan Baby, which is a strange title. Here Fulci channels The Exorcist, and reminds me of Poltergeist (even though that movie came out in the same year) for a movie about a girl who ends up cursed because her father uncovered an ancient Egyptian tomb. This leads to cruel deaths, weird happenings and a finale that is pretty wild. It’s a shame that this movie had its budget cut, as Fulci was trying to move away from his usual gory affairs, and you can tell that he was trying to make a creepy and effective movie. Still there are some good freaky death scenes in this movie, and it’s pretty obvious this is still a Fulci movie.

Christopher Connelly and Laura Lenz are really good as the parents of Susie (Brigitta Boccoli) who ends up becoming affected by the evil. What happens to Susie and her brother’s (Giovanni Frezza) babysitter is pretty crazy, and there is a bedroom scene that would easily be at home in any of the Poltergeist movies. I can’t say more about the deaths yet one that occurs in the finale is pretty wild and very memorable, and despite not being allowed to reach it’s full potential I still liked this movie. I saw it thanks to Shudder, which has a fairly solid collection of Fulci’s movies. The Italians sure knew how to make a crazy horror movie.

She’s got that…cobra in her? Huh Fulci was ahead of his time!

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