Review: ‘The Strangler’

Bill S. Ballinger's scenario describes the latter phases of the homicidal career of a paranoid schizophrenic (Victor Buono) whose hatred of women has been motivated by a possessive mother who has completely warped his personality. His fetish for dolls ultimately betrays him to the police just as he is in the act of applying the coup de grace to distaff victim No. 11.

Bill S. Ballinger’s scenario describes the latter phases of the homicidal career of a paranoid schizophrenic (Victor Buono) whose hatred of women has been motivated by a possessive mother who has completely warped his personality. His fetish for dolls ultimately betrays him to the police just as he is in the act of applying the coup de grace to distaff victim No. 11.

Dramatically skillful direction by Burt Topper and a firm level of histrionic performances help The Strangler over some rough spots and keep the picture from succumbing to inconsistencies of character and contrivances of story scattered through the picture.

Bueno for Buono, a convincing menace all the way. There’s always a place on the screen for a fat man who can act, and Buono has the avoirdupois field virtually to himself.

The Strangler

Production

Allied Artists. Director Burt Topper; Producer Samuel Bischoff, David Diamond; Screenplay Bill S. Ballinger; Camera Jacques Marquette; Editor Robert Eisen; Music Marlin Skiles; Art Director Hal Pereira, Eugene Lourie

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1964. Running time: 89 MIN.

With

Victor Buono David McLean Diane Sayer Davey Davison Ellen Corby Baynes Barron

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