Horror Movie Review: Madman (1982)


The legend of Madman Marz tells the story of a farmer who murdered his entire family for no apparent reason. He was caught by an angry mob who took him into the woods & hung him. The next day when they returned to bury the body they discovered the noose empty & Madman nowhere to be found.

It is said that should you say his name out loud he will awaken & begin killing again.

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This story is being told around a campfire to a group of campers & counsellors all enjoying their final days at the camp. One of the kids around the fire is unimpressed with the story so decides to call out Madman Marz’s name. This wakes up the killer who then sets about dispatching everyone at the camp as the night goes on.

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Anyone who has seen slasher movies will know how this goes, teens make out, wander off into the woods & get dispatched one by one by the hulking maniac. It’s all very boring offering nothing that has been done by far better movies (Friday the 13th for one!).

The cast is made up of nobodies (except for Dawn of the Dead’s Gaylen Ross) who just about hold the film together. Forgettable characters there just to die in amusing ways. Perhaps the standout is Ellie (played by Jan Claire) who has the most hilarious facial reactions to getting an axe to the throat.

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Madman Marz, while an imposing figure, isn’t at all scary & how he manages to be so stealthy is really something. When you finally get a good look at him it hardly improves things as the make-up looks cheap & rubbery.

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It’s got some decent gory close-ups but the blood all has that watery, washed out look that was prevalent in many 80’s horror. It’s a low budget offering so it’s easy to forgive, though.

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Unfortunately, this isn’t a good slasher movie, it’s not even a good horror movie. It’s overly long with far too many lulls in action. With bland characters, a boring villain & a story that is far from original this won’t live long in the memory.

Except that face…just absolutely glorious.

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(It gets an extra 2 points for the face alone).

Madman
  • 4/10
    The Final Score - 4/10
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