Movie Review: 'Maniac' -- 1.5 stars
Directed by Frank Khalfoun
Starring Elijah Wood, Nora Arnezeder
Playing at IFC Center
If, after "The Lord of the Rings" or any of the other big-time movies Elijah Wood has made over the years, you thought to yourself, "Man, that guy really should play a serial killer," you probably saw him do so in "Sin City" and figured that was enough.
So here we are with the brutal "Maniac," a remake of a 1980 slasher flick, starring Wood as the owner of a mannequin shop with serious women issues. How serious? He spends his night prowling the city, glaring into mirrors and scalping victims.
This is your everyday, exploitive D-grade flick, filled with sadistic violence. The only thing separating it from typical bottom-of-the-barrel stuff is the central stylistic conceit: a first-person point of view that makes us see the killings from his perspective.
But we don't learn anything more about this terrible, tortured soul with the camera literally serving as his eyes and ears. In fact, the POV approach makes the movie even harder to endure.