Director: Peter Bogdanovich
Year Released: 1968
Two different lives are skillfully juxtaposed in this clever B-picture: that of an aging horror star (Boris Karloff) and his desire to retire and a blank-faced young man who shoots random people with a variety of rifles and pistols. The social commentary is pointed - just as it was in Bob Clark's stylistically similar Deathdream - and Bogdanovich resists using Psych 101 on the murderous young man, leaving his motivations and inner demons alone, which is perhaps more horrifying than explaining away the problem (it's also eerie that I watched this on the same day they caught the "BTK" serial killer in Wichita, who eluded capture for over 30 years and led a relatively normal existence, with a wife and a job and children). It is slow paced in the beginning, but does gather momentum the further you get into it, leading up to a tense finale at a drive-in, where reality and cinematic fantasy blur.