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This bout between good and Satan includes some scares, camp and better than average credits.

This time the demon is a 400-year-old American Indian medicine man. He’s a little devil in the literal sense, thanks to over- exposure to x-rays which has shriveled him into a three-foot tall redskin monster. Until he makes a rather dramatic entrance onto the floor of a hospital bedroom, he can be found # growing as a fetus # on Susan Strasberg’s upper back.

Michael Ansara, a modern-day medicine man, is imported from South Dakota to deliver the evil spirit and return him to the place where 400-year-old medicine men hibernate.

Tony Curtis plays a charlatan of the supernatural, reading tarot cards for rich old ladies. He’s romantically involved with Strasberg and does most of the coordinating for the exorcism booking the medicine man, arranging for cooperation from the hospital, etc.

His character is a nice twist # bogus genie in a situation where the unseen powers really are controlling things. But in general Curtis is too serious about it all. Only Burgess Meredith as a befuddled professor of anthropology has any fun with his part.

The Manitou

  • Production: Avco Embassy/Weist-Simon. Director William Girdler; Producer William Girdler; Screenplay William Girdler, Jon Cedar, Tom Pope; Camera Michel Hugo; Editor Bub Asman; Music Lalo Schifrin; Art Director Walter Scott Herndon
  • Crew: (Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1978. Running time: 104 MIN.
  • With: Tony Curtis Michael Ansara Susan Strasberg Stella Stevens Jon Cedar Burgess Meredith
  • Music By: