With a good B-movie cast, solid genre director in William Lustig and screenwriter Larry Cohen bringing his usual "New Yawk" flavour to the proceedings this above average crime thriller mixed with a slasher flick has the residents of the Big Apple falling prey to a murderous cop who is not only killing innocent people but it turns out is a deformed, almost undead former cop out for bloody revenge. Bruce Campbell is along for the ride as the cop who ends-up getting framed for all the murders.
Sporting a decent premise and better characterizations than we've come to expect from slasher flicks, this is certainly an entertaining time with alright deaths, a steady script, a good finish that has some okay suspense and one almost skin-crawling flashback to our killer's prison fate.
Give this one a chance, or a second chance if you saw it years ago, as it's probably the best slasher flick of 1988 - and one of the better ones of the late 80's. Lustig and Cohen would not only team-up again for the sequels (apart from the third movie where Lustig left the production during filming) but they'd also do 1996's Uncle Sam. Lustig would go on to be the founder of "non-mainstream" DVD label, Blue Underground.
Followed by two sequels.
Directed By: William Lustig.
Written By: Larry Cohen.
Starring: Tom Atkins, Bruce Campbell, Laurene Landon, Richard Roundtree.