Elijah Wood stars in Maniac, which is a remake of the cult classic made by William Lustig. Director Franck Khalfoun tries to reimagine the movie in the first person perspective. Frank, played by Wood, is the main character of Maniac.
His mother is a whore, who likes to have sex on the sidewalk and threesomes at home. Frank grows up with issues because of this. Now older, he runs Angela’s Mannequins. He restores mannequins. He is also a serial killer who likes to place the bloody scalps of his victims on the mannequins.
Frank notices that someone is taking some photos outside of his shop. This is how he meets Anna (Nora Arnezeder), who is a photographer and loves mannequins. The two hit it off despite Frank’s dark character with mother issues.
Maniac is unbelievable. There’s no sense of urgency in it. The dialogue feels unnatural most of the time. It feels too forced. We see the movie through the eyes of Frank and yet he is made to speak out loud as if the viewers can’t comprehend what’s on the screen.
Frank hunts down women on empty Los Angeles streets while he deals with migraines and flashbacks of his childhood. He scalps women all throughout the movie and we see it through his own eyes. This makes him a stereotypical psychotic killer that viewers are not able to connect with. Oh well, who could relate to a serial killer anyway, right?
Frank slices off the scalp of a woman and then looks in a mirror. This becomes tedious to watch after some time. The audience is not given time to contemplate of what’s going on with the character. The original Maniac is a slasher, gory classic. It was creepy and scary. The remake is just plain boring. IT just gratuitous violence from start to end.