31 Days of Horror 2016, Day 9: Maniac Cop (1988)

This movie is weird. I’ll be completely up front about the fact that it took me four tries to get through this movie, and that may have contributed to my confusion; but, I feel like some essential plot elements were missing. That aside, I kinda liked this movie anyway. 

The premise is exactly what you’d expect. Someone who appears to be a cop has gone bananas. The media deems the murderer “maniac cop” and it causes a rift on the streets. People don’t know who to trust because a man in uniform is suddenly responsible for crime rather than protection. The maniac cop in question pulls the sort of moves you’d expect from a horror movie slasher. He’s impeccably fast and appears, unexpectedly, around every corner; and he is impervious to bullets and other killing devices. Seemingly, something supernatural is at had. Unfortuntely, all we know is that the maniac cop is a former police officer who was convicted of a crime and sent to prison, where he was ganged up on and apparently murdered in the shower. We only learn this through a flashback, and the why and who parts are hazy. Maniac cop’s appearance doesn’t make too much sense either, as he doesn’t really look so much like the undead as he does a burn victim. 

It’s shrugworthy, though. Somehow the movie still works. It’s got the charm of an 80’s cop drama, and the crazy as hell chin of Robert Z’Dar. Plus, this movie allows a handsome, young Bruce Campbell to do what he does best: be thrown around like a ragdoll. 

I plan to watch the sequel. After all, Maniac Cop’s hand comes up out of the water after a dramatic and unnecessary car chase that ends in a paddy wagon cruising off of a dock…and well, that’s a cliffhanger I can’t ignore.

Challenge fulfilled: a movie from the 1980’s

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