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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why I Never Wanted a Sandbox
Manhattan Baby, considered a failure by many critics that wanted Fulci to conform to the formula of horror that made him successful, was actually one of his more entertaining movies. This was because it did break from the proverbial mould, building more on a storyline and an ever-present, overwhelming scene of doom. Unlike many of his earlier movies (Zombie, The Beyond)...
Published on June 28, 2002 by TorridlyBoredShopper

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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fulci Misses The Mark
Italian horror will never be seen as art to the masses. Even the hardcore fans admit to the cheesiness as being part of the attraction to them, but even though it's a trashy kind of genre, you can screw up! Lucio Fulci screwed up here. To people now taking an interest in Fulci, I'm sure this dvd cover has stared out at you from the shelf at the store and beckoned you...
Published on March 27, 2004 by Stanley Runk


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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why I Never Wanted a Sandbox, June 28, 2002
By 
TorridlyBoredShopper "T(to the)B(to the)S" ("Daddy Dagon's Daycare" - Proud Sponsor of the Little Tendril Baseball Team, USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
Manhattan Baby, considered a failure by many critics that wanted Fulci to conform to the formula of horror that made him successful, was actually one of his more entertaining movies. This was because it did break from the proverbial mould, building more on a storyline and an ever-present, overwhelming scene of doom. Unlike many of his earlier movies (Zombie, The Beyond) that brought this bleak overview with them as well, Lucio decided to try a new avenue in this presentation, one that only briefly sprinkled gore into the cinematic formula, causing much of the fallout experienced. He said that he wanted to present a more metaphysical terror, using a small array of special effects in the process, that would give his film a more Catholicist, "evil can be beaten but not truly destroyed," mentality. Well, mission accomplished.
The storyline, with its Egyptian focal point, deals with the manifestation of an ancient evil that is awaken (and overused) by a little girl after her foolishly curious archeologist father prods at things best left alone. It has some nice scenes with pieces of dark humor mixed together with catchy "manifesations/proofs of the dark forces present," plus some humorously cheap scenes that keep the movie from taking itself too serious. All in all, its fun and a bit dark at the same time, and is a good film for horror lovers/Lucio fans that remember his Sci-fi trials/Westerners and not simply his gore films.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fulci Misses The Mark, March 27, 2004
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
Italian horror will never be seen as art to the masses. Even the hardcore fans admit to the cheesiness as being part of the attraction to them, but even though it's a trashy kind of genre, you can screw up! Lucio Fulci screwed up here. To people now taking an interest in Fulci, I'm sure this dvd cover has stared out at you from the shelf at the store and beckoned you to take it home . Don't listen to it! Yeah, it's Fulci, and yeah, it's from Anchor Bay, but don't let that fool you. Manhattan Baby is BAD, even for a Fulci film. With most of his horror films you could always guarantee to have a fun viewing experience, but this is actually quite painful. Everything you love about his previous works is nowhere to be found here. Fulci was actually trying to make a real horror film with suspense and stuff. Many directors accomplish this, but Fulci never has, and he certainly doesn't here. Fulci's films excel in atmosphere, music, gore, cheesiness and just downright strangeness. This film has none of that. It's basically a reworking of the Charleton Heston mummy flick, The Awakening-which was no masterpiece, but better than this. The only purpose this dvd will serve is to make your Italian horror dvd collection look bigger, coz it will get only one or maybe two viewings-mark my words! You just may be better off investing in a Kiss Koffin. That will at least get more use.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Middling Fulci, July 1, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
This Lucio Fulci production, released following the effective but shoddy HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY (1981) and the shocking and sadistic NEW YORK RIPPER (1982), is essentially the last Lovecraftian horror he directed, and is a strangely subdued movie for Fulci. Editing is even more lackadaisical than usual, and the story is a hodgepodge of plot points and setups lifted from POLTERGEIST, THE EXORCIST, THE BIRD, THE AWAKENING, THE SHINING, to name only a few. Christopher Connelly, Martha Taylor and other principal actors walk around in a daze. (The child actor who plays the possessed girl is quite good, however, and the dubbing is less annoying than usual) There is also a tendency to rely on matte painting and other optical special effects, which can be construed as a bad strategy depending on one's point of view. (Shots of some blue rays shone into a character's eyes, and so on; some viewers may find them laughable) Of course, this being a Fulci film, there are a few impressive set pieces, including an extremely atmospheric opening sequence set in Egypt, a cobra attack shot with a "crawlercam," and the final fate of the au pair girl, nicely suggested rather than explicitly shown. However, gorehounds are warned that there is ONLY ONE bona fide Fulci-style gore scene, involving attacks by stuffed birds, in the entire movie!
As for DVD production qualities, MANHATTAN BABY boasts transfer from one of the cleanest prints I have ever seen, comparable to the Mario Bava collections from Image, with hardly any scratches or artifacts. The cinematography, by Guglielmo Mancori, is given a tremendous boost as a result. Sound quality is not as top-notch, though; I wish the sound mix favor evocative music score (there is no listing of the composer anywhere on the film!) rather than insipid dialogue, which is little help for the movie anyway. The DVD also contains a 9-minute interview segment with the film's screenwriter Dardano Sacchetti, who is amusingly frank with the difficulties of production, Fulci's mysogyny, his among other topics, although he acknowledges only one film, THE EXORCIST, as BABY's "influence." All in all, another superior production from Anchor Bay.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a by the numbers film-yet still worth a view, July 16, 2001
By 
Robert Cossaboon "devil doll" (The happy land of Walworth, NY) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
A complaint that can be made of just about every one of the many horror films out these days is that they have in some way, shape or form ripped off something from their predecessors. Manhattan Baby is no exception. Although I do not get the overt Exorcist connection that most people see in this film, I can definitely see the parallel with Poltergeist. Interestingly, although the film begins in an Egyptian tomb, most of the action takes place within an apartment-and the stylish way he transmits the claustrophobia of a tomb into this apartment for the duration of most of the film is where I think Fulci triumphs the strongest. Things I thought were effective: the actress who played the girl, the photo in the park, the conjured doorway, the body in the wall, the eyeless entity in the beginning of the film, and (I may stand alone on this one) the attack of the birds at the film's end-this scene was so out there, I was taken in nevertheless . . . strings and all.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Underrated, October 2, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Manhattan Baby [VHS] (VHS Tape)
First off, this film is only of interest to Fulci diehards. That being said, it's nowhere near his best work, The Beyond. Only those with a short attention span will find it boring, because it isn't propelled by gore. There is some, but nowhere near his other excesses, most notably the final death of the film. The music is good, but for some reason was pulled straight from The Beyond. The story centers around the possession of a young girl from an eye medallion she recieves in Egypt from an old woman with white eyes. The cycle seems to be continuous, with no true end to the eye, which houses an evil force that appears as white light. Like I said, Fulci diehards should seek it out, but it may be tedious to the unconverted.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Horror film ?, August 26, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
The entrance to the film was the only interesting and attention getting part of the film.The rest of the film was very disapointing considering that Fulcie was the director.The effects were so poorly executed that they spoiled the film.The film should have taken place entirely in Egypt.The Egyptian tombs and pyramids would have made a better back drop,instead of the appartment in New York City.As for the background music in the film,well to put it bluntly,it was terrible,it did nothing to intensify the horror scenes.The special effects were no where close to the exorcist.I was very disapointed with this film.It was not worth the money i shelled out for the DVD.
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars an excellent example of fulcis imagination and craftmanship!, January 29, 2002
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
This film is magical right from the begining to the blood curdling end. Worth every penny! Fulci has got ideas from raiders of the lost ark in here but still manages to keep the film soley his own great vision.One of fulcis most stylistic films and great fun.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very underrated film... Fulci scores big, August 28, 2014
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This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
Manhattan Baby is a beautiful shot supernatural thriller. I really enjoyed it and was shock that it got so many bad reviews. It's not for everyone but if you are a fan of Fulci check it out. The film is almost dreamlike in some sequences and the score by Fabio frizzi is chilling. The ending I think will confuse people but I understood it after a second watch that made me love the film even more. This film is truly a underrated masterpiece. Highly recommended.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The end of Fulci's gothic road., June 23, 2001
By 
Nicholas Ehst (Phoenix, Arizona) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Manhattan Baby (DVD)
Falling as the very last film in Fulci's "gothic" cycle (consisting of Zombie, City of the Living Dead, House By the Cemetery, The Beyond, and The Black Cat) Manhattan Baby is far to often the victim of bad press, mainly due to the admittedly disappointing lack of gore, somewhat "low budget" production values, and the almost non-existent story. While all of the aforementioned downfalls do exist, they in no way destroy the film as a whole.
Manhattan Baby is what all of Fulci's horror films of that period were, an exercise in visual cinema. While this time around the visuals tend to not be of such an evisceary nature, they remain visceral none the less. Heavy clouds of green and yellow envelope the screen in the opening desert scenes, (added towards the end of production, and against Fulci's wishes) creating a vast hopelessness that near rivals his visions of hell in The Beyond.
After we move from the desolate landscapes of Egypt, to the claustrophobic confines of a New York apartment, the color schemes move more into blue's and reds, (while not of the extreme Suspiria, or Whip and the Body variety). With this, the atmosphere of the film drops into a creepy drone, very efficiently conveying the confusion and fear of a frightened child. Up to this point the movie works wonderfully, the problem is that it never really picks up a full head of steam after that. Somewhat uneventful deaths follow one after another, all taking place without the patented Fulci gore that fans have come to expect from his films (especially of that era). And while the feel of the movie remains dark in tone and cinematography, most of the "creepy" scenes fail to shock due mostly to a lack of the necessary budget to pull them off. It isn't until the last few minutes of the film that the maestro pulls out all the stops with a neck spurting, face ripping finale. But even that suffers from Fulci's habit of using unconvincing animal puppets in attack scenes, whose similarity to the Muppets can quash the fear from even the scariest of scenes. (See the tarantula attack in The Beyond, and the always loveable Cat in the Brain)
One watches this film with somewhat mixed feelings; both enjoying the experience while simultaneously wishing that they could see the film Fulci had envisioned. If he had only been granted the time and money to make the film he had originally set out to achieve, Lucio would no doubt be celebrated for Manhattan Baby the way he is many of his other classics. As it stands though, we still have this, a skeleton that was the makings for a classic that only the Maestro could have pulled off.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, July 9, 2014
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This review is from: Manhattan Baby [VHS] (VHS Tape)
A+
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Manhattan Baby
Manhattan Baby by Lucio Fulci (DVD - 2007)
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