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The Fanatic


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Editorial Reviews

Beautiful Jenna Bates (Bond-girl Caroline Munro) is stalked at the Cannes Film Festival by a Fanatic cabdriver dreaming of being a major Hollywood producer! The crazed cabbie does and is sure that she could become an actress. Unfortunately, before he can help her, he must first get her attention. In his obsessive quest for her ultimate performance, the hack embarks on a string of grisly murders culminating in a shocking twist ending! Much of the story was shot on location at the 1981 Cannes Film Festival and features shots of several famous actors and filmmakers. Known as "The Last Horror Film" during its highly successful theatrical run, Fanatic boasts fantastic performances by Munro and the psychotic character actor Joe Spinnel (Maniac, Godfather II) and a string of celebrity cameos.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Susanne Benton, Malgosia Casey, Sean Casey, Peter D'Arcy, Mai Britt Finseth
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: TROMA ENTERTAINMENT INC.
  • DVD Release Date: March 14, 2000
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305805873
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #266,049 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Fanatic" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Cash Steele on April 25, 2001
Format: DVD
Vinnie Durand (Joe Spinell) is a New York cabbie with delusions to be a legendary film producer. He is obsessed by horror movie queen Jana Bates (Caroline Munro)and making her the star of his movie. Vinnie saves his tips and gets a ticket to the south of France where Jana is promoting her new movie at the Cannes Film festival. He tracks her down in clubs and press conferences but can't get close to her. After her producer/ ex-husband's throat is cut he sets about disposing of anyone else "preventing" him making his movie. He finally gets too pitch his big idea to Jana in her bathroom with the aid of a broken champange bottle. She manages to escape but police are sceptical about her story and think it may be publicity stunt. Vinnie eventually kidnaps Jana and makes his movie but not without a few unexpected twists in the plot. Fanatic sees a partial reprise for Spinell's MANIAC role and although dangerous he portrays a much more pathetic,deluded character but not as repressed or indeed manical. The film contains several dream sequences portraying Vinnie as a successful producer and in these and many of the confrontation scenes Spinell's menacing but vunerable performance really convey the extent of his obsession and instability. Also known as THE LAST HORROR MOVIE its worth watching for Spinell and Munro fans and anyone partial to psycho stalker scenarios. Set against the backdrop of Cannes it provides a snapshot of the 1981 film scene. Not so much a must have movie as a must see once movie.
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Format: DVD
Low-budget it may be, but The Last Horror Film (aka Fanatic) has panache aplenty and makes what appears to be a short trip to Camp Gore a surprisingly significant trek into the land of mystery, madness, and mayhem. Despite its greasy star, a real excess of bad acting, wretched early 80s soundtrack, deficient cinematography, and unimpressive special effects, this film really won me over in the end, not least because of the somewhat surprise ending.

Joe Spinell plays Vinny Durand, a New York taxi driver who dreams of becoming a famous movie director. He is particularly taken with Jana Bates (Caroline Munro), the biggest horror film starlet in the world. Jana is in fact so larger than life that she is up for Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival (for her performance in Scream, a film which culminates in her character getting a radical new look at the hands of a madman with a blowtorch). Vinny has saved up his money, and so it is that he bids adieu to his mother and heads off to Cannes, determined to get Jana to be in the film he has written just for her. Not surprisingly, he can't get near such a big movie star, but he does come in contact with her producer ex-husband, an agent, a movie director, and others who don't exactly embrace his genius. Oddly enough, several of these very same people soon turn up dead or missing, starting with director (and Jana's ex-husband) Bret Bates (Glenn Jacobson). Many, including the French police, interpret these events as publicity stunts, leaving Jana decidedly vulnerable to Vinny's determined advances. Speaking of Vinny, we watch him spiral farther and farther into obsession, emotional turmoil, and maniacal behavior.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Bortnik on May 20, 2005
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
No doubt about it...this film is very outdated BUT that's what's great about it! Considering when it was made, I thought it was a decent 80's horror/comedy film. Vinnie Durand is an obssessed fan of scream queen, Janna Bates. He follows her around, tapes her, dreams about her, thinks about her all day long....he basically lives and breathes her. BUT she does not even know he's alive. He desperately wants to make a movie with her, but no one is giving him a chance to get near her....Vinnie won't stop trying though! During all this, several murders are being committed. Each victim (who is part of the film crew) receives a letter saying, "you have made your last horror film....goodbye!" Then dies...

Overall, I thought it was OK. Joe Spinell's performance was good...the others were from OK-bad. I am a big fan of 80's horror flicks/80's films...even the cheesiest ones, so I liked it.
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By A. Griffiths on January 28, 2008
Format: DVD
Has this film got some kind of cult reputation? I really hope not. It's one of the worst horror films I have ever seen. I wasn't expecting much but the movie managed to fall far short of even the modest hopes I had for it being entertaining.

The slim plot follows a deranged stalker called Vinnie played by "Maniac" star Joe Spinnel, who makes it his life work to persuade horror star Jana Bates (played by Caroline Munro) to appear in his home movie. Set in Cannes at a film festival, the film follows our creepy fanatic as he hounds Jana across the city with his home movie camera, as well as tracking her efforts to evade him and the dead bodies that keep turning up.

Well if this sounds interesting in any way, let me tell you right now that it's a flop in every department. The whole enterprise is riddled with more holes than Swiss Cheese, in fact I'm surprised it hasn't made onto any of those Top Worst Films lists. The cast is dreadful - Joe Spinell hams his way through the role of the madman, well actually he's not bad, and he does this type of role well but with an awful script and a comedy cute elderly Mom (who he continually calls up to assure her that his film is well on the way to being made), he doesn't manage to make the character menacing or impressive at all. Caroline Munro is even worse, with a fractured, amateurish performance that makes it impossible to understand how she ever became a "scream queen" star - is she this bad in anything else? Or was she purposely trying to make the Jana Bates character look like an idiot? Her appearance is also unutterably ghastly, with a shock of really BIG and white streaked hair and numerous gold and silver baggy jumpsuits - pure 80's hell!
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