One of the few action slashers to exist and maintain a cult following, Maniac Cop is one self explanatory horror set in New York City. From the mind none other than Larry Cohen who wrote and produced the film, the story choppily follows a detective on the search of a – you guessed it – maniac cop, prowling on innocents in the night. Up turns Bruce Campbell as a cop who is accused, and his lover, who is also a cop, as they, too, try and capture the killer and bring the deaths to a stop.
Its quick to the punch. Three kills in twenty minutes from the shaded killer and no sign of stopping, Maniac Cop manages to be relentless, but in a bad way. There’s no tendency to establish a rough set of characters, and the one person that viewers can attempt to cling to is hardly on screen. Sadly, the only explored character with a somewhat certain depth to him is the maniac cop – which is rather disappointing when he’s the villain of the film. Also, Bruce Campbell’s character isn’t portrayed as someone to root for, in fact, no one is. His personality starts off dickish and yet again, no depth to this one at all.
It isn’t until its second half where the film heightens nearly every aspect that disappointed with its uninteresting first half. It dives deeper into its mystery, characters, and action – but still isn’t anything to gleam over. However, its boisterous soundtrack is suspenseful, packing a punch and doing the job right. Where else, Maniac Cop falls into a mediocre direction that fails to enliven a fun time, which in all honesty, is what this film really needed.