The New York Ripper review

Title: The New York Ripper
Director: Lucio Fulci
Writer: Lucio Fulci , Gianfranco Clerici
Stars: Jack Hedley, Almanta Suska, Howard Ross
Tagline: New York City: It’s a nice place to visit, but you wouldn’t want to die there!

My Rating:


Give it a watch especially if you have nothing better to do. Find the rating key here.


Who you’ll see:

Lt. Fred Williams: Burnt out NYPD Detective. He likes being with a prostitute.
Fay Majors: Attacked by the ripper. Peter’s girl. Horny for him but he rejects her constantly.
Mickey Scellenda: Missing fingers on his right hand. Likes kinky sex. Thought to be the killer.
Mrs. Weissburger: First victim’s landlady. Talks a lot and likes to listen to phone calls.
Chief of Police: Lucio Fulci!
Kitty: Prostitute who Lt. Williams frequents. Gets gutted by the ripper.
Dr. Paul Davis: Likes chess. Appears to be amused by everything.
Peter Bunch: Faye’s boyfriend. Gets blasted in the face by Lt. Williams.
Dr. Lodge: Likes to listen to audio recordings of live sex shows his wife attends.
Jane Forrester Lodge: Married to Dr. Lodge. She likes live sex shows and going to seedy motels with strange men. Eventually gets killed.


Things you need to see:

The opening credit rolls over dog with hand in its mouth.
Dead boobs 11:47
More boobs 19:00
Bottle to the crotch! 24:00
More boobs 25:00
Even more boobs. 49:00
Bloody boobs 53:30
Yes even more boobs. 1:13:00
Right through the eyeball! 1:16:00
Right to the face! 1:28:02


What to listen for:

“Morales has silver toes.”
“Eleven people are murdered here a day and over half are women Mrs. Weissburger, goodbye.”
“Don’t worry I’ll watch the property and if anybody comes I’ll bark.”


What The New York Ripper taught us:

When given a choice dogs will always choose to bring back a human hand over the stick you threw.
80’s New Yorkers hate women.
Being taunted by a serial killer is 100x worse when they talk like a duck.
It’s always best to bring your fancy Porsche when going to hang out at seedy places.
When running from someone you’re afraid of it’s always best to only slightly jog.
Letting strange men tie you to the bed in a shady motel is apparently a bad idea.
One should always use the hand missing fingers to do things.
Best way to learn about your boyfriend’s secret kid is right before being attacked by a killer so as to make it not seem so bad.


What the hell is happening:

The film opens disturbingly enough with what amounts to an old man playing fetch with his dog and the body of a dead prostitute. This body turns out to be the first victim of Serial Killer. The police detective assigned to finding the psycho is Lt. Fred Williams (Jack Hedley), and he’s taking orders from Lucio Fulci himself. Fans of the director will enjoy his comical albeit brief appearance. The police get insight into the mind of serial killers from Dr. Paul Davis (Paolo Malco). Davis is a college psychology professor who just might be as creepy as the Killer himself. A killer that is running around the city “ripping” women left and right calls the police with updates and taunts. Did I mention he does this in a creepy Donald Duck voice? It doesn’t take long for the victims to start piling up. First is Cinzia De Ponti playing a young, beautiful girl taking the ferry and then, Eva (Zora Kerova), a live sex theater performer who gets hers by way of a broken bottle to the crotch.

From there we meet Fay Majors (Almanta Suska), who is taking the subway home. The only other passenger on the subway is Mickey Scallenda (Howard Ross), the same man that was in the audience at the XXX Theater when the last killing took place. He begins to move closer to her. It’s about now we are given a glimpse of that fact he is missing two fingers. She manages to escape into a theatre before he can do anything to her. She isn’t safe for long when the duck killer strikes. We see the killer’s face, and then she wakes up in the hospital.

Suddenly we see “the ripper” as he calmly walks through the hospital toward her room. It turns out to be her boyfriend Peter (Andrea Occhipinti), and it leaves the audience wondering what is real and what is not. The ante is upped by the duck sounding killer by making things personal between him and the detective after him. Hedley isn’t free from sin and he indulges himself with excessive drinking and patronizing prostitutes.

The New York Ripper is an atmospheric slasher. It pulls from the Italian giallo/slasher genre as their popularity began to fade. NYR has decent twists, turns and red herrings. The film attempts to play tricks on you, but ultimately you will probably easily figure out who is the killer. The main attractions in this film are the brutal, gory attack scenes and the more sexually explicit scenes.

Ripper, like all of Lucio Fulci’s films, is over the top with their sex and especially their gore. The gory scenes generally are tinted by the absurd situations they take place in. With NYR, Fulci takes a grittier, more realistic approach to the brutality. This is really evident in a razor blade killing where we essentially see every cut and slash. When it comes to dialogue, it really isn’t the greatest you’ll come across and the dubbing is pretty bad. If you go into it with the right mindset, you can enjoy the flick. Grab some friends and some drinks and immerse yourself in one of the master of cheese and gore’s entertaining bad movie. The ride Fulci takes you on is a fun albeit messy one.


~ by ClevelandPoet on April 26, 2012.

2 Responses to “The New York Ripper review”

  1. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this,
    like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you could do with some pics
    to drive the message home a bit, but other than that, this is excellent blog.
    A great read. I’ll certainly be back.


    You know…I loved this movie. Mainly because it’s aimed towards effing up the minds of giallo connoisseurs . It would be way easier to guess the killer if you are not into the genre and you just go for the obvious culprit. The case against Peter was HUGE from the get go (even going as far as showing him slashing his girl at the cinema) which made me wonder…., since there were subtle (by comaparison) hints, red herrings if you will, condemning Dr. Paul Davis, such as the purchase of a gay porn magazine, his claiming that the killer had a higher intellect and education (self wankery), changing his voice pitch in order to scare his secretary, the checkmate move after a killing…that’s why I think the straight forward resolution was brilliant.
    BTW, sorry for my somewhat clumsy English

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